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From 1862 to 1914 

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This book has been written in the endeavor to present 
a straightforward and impartial account of the history of 
Europe from the beginning of the chancellorship of Bis- 
marck in Prussia to the outbreak of the Great War. 

Emphasis has been laid throughout the entire book upon 
those events which have aflfected international relations. 
The narrative of the domestic politics of the separate states 
has been curtailed, except where such politics had a dis- 
tinct bearing upon the part which a state played in inter- 
national affairs. The alliances and the conflict of interests 
which have brought about the present Great War have been 
discussed in detail. The characters and methods of those 
statesmen who have had the greatest influence in interna- 
tional issues have been developed at length. It has been 
our plan thus to give the reader a conception of a true his- 
tory of Europe rather than to present an aggregation of 
histories of the separate European states. 

In order to afford a more adequate imderstanding of the 
period, we have endeavored to co5rdinate events in time. 
By this means the reader is enabled to gain a knowledge 
of the general political, economic, and social status in the 
chief states of Europe at any given range of years. 

The campaigns of the important wars of this period have 
been treated, not with a mass of technical detail, but with 
sufficient fullness to enable the reader to imderstand the 
chief strategical movements and the reasons for their suc- 
cess or failure. 

In the division of the work of preparing this volume, the 
Professor of English and History has undertaken the political, 
diplomatic, and economic history of the period ; the Assist- 

3 S 2 5 2 2 ^'^' ''^^ ^^ Google 


ant Professor of History the military campaigns, compris- 
ing the Danish (1864), the Austro-Prussian (1866), the 
Franco-Gennan (1870-1871), the Russo-Turkish (1877- 
1878), and the entire chapter on the Russo-Japanese War. 
It is a pleasure to acknowledge the assistance rendered 
by instructors in the Department of History, especially by 
Captain Philip Hayes and Captain Sidney V. Bingham. 
Acknowledgment is also due to Mr. W. L. Ostrander, As- 
sistant Librarian, who has prepared the Index. A number 
of the maps, namely, Europe 1871, Germany 1871-1914, 
Austria-Hungary 1914, Balkan States 1856-1912, Ottoman 
Empire and the Balkan States 1914, Asia 1914, and Africa 
1914, have been reprinted from volume II of A Political 
AND Social History of Modern Europe with the kind 
permission of its author. Professor Carlton J. H. Hayes. 

L. H. H. 
A. W. C. 

West Point, N. Y. 
November, 1917. 

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The Attainment op German Hegemont In Eubope . . 9-184 


Prussia and Bismarck 9-29 

A. Accession of William I : Political Crisis ... 9 

B. Bismarck ^^ 

C. The Political Situation 27 


The European States in 1860 30-59 

A. Germany 30 

B. Austria 87 

C. Italy 43 

D. Russia 49 

£. France 53 


Bismarck's Policies, 1862-1864 60-87 

. A. Internal Politics ........ 60 

B. Foreign Diplomacy 66 

i. Bismarck and Russia 66 

ii. Bismarck and Austria 70 

iii. The Schleswig-Holstein Issue .... 74 

iv. The Danish War 78 


Bismarck, Prussia, and European Politics, 1864-1866 . 88-116 

A. The Schleswig-Holstein Adjustment .... 88 


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> \^ - 

Bismarck vs. Napoleon III 117-137 



B. The Other Powers of Europe and their B^lation to a 
possible Austro-Prussian ConlBict ... 90 

i. Russia 90 

ii. Great Britain 90 

iii. France 92 

iv. Italy 94 

C. Diplomacy Leading to the War 96 

D. The Austro-Prussian War 98 

E. The Treaty of Peace 112 


A. Napoleon Ill's Attempts to get Compensation . . 117 

B. Napoleon's Loss of Influence in France . . . 118 

C. Internal Affairs in Germany 121 

D. Bismarck's Diplomatic Preparations for the Franco- 
German War 125^ 

i. Austria 125 

ir. Great Britain ....... 128 

iii. Italy 132 

iv. Other States of Europe 133 

E. The Outbreak of War 138 

The FRANCo-GERBiAN Wak 138-153 


European Readjustment, 1871-1875 154-184 

A. Bismarck during the Franco-German War . . . 154 

B. Events in Europe during the Franco-German War . 158 
i. France 159 

ii. Italy 161 

iii. Russia 161 

iv. Formation of the German Empire . . . ' 163 

C. The Conclusion of the Franco-German War . . 166 
i. The Commune 167 

ii. The Treaty of Frankfort 169 

D. European Readjustment following the War . . . 170 
i. France 170 

ii. Germany 174 

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iii. Italy 177 

iv. Other States 180 

£. International Relations following the Franco-German 

War 180 

F. Summary : Bismarck and Prussia, 1862-1875 . . 183 


The Maintenance of German Hegemony in £urope . . 186-279 


The RuBSO-TuRKisH War 187-206 

A. The Near Eastern Problem 187 

B. The Bulgarian Atrocities 189 

C. Attitude of Great Britain and Russia toward Turkey . 192 

i. Great Britain 192 

ii. Russia 194 

D. The Russo-Turkish War 195 


The Conoress of Berlin and the Triple Alliance . . 207-223 

A. European Intervention in the Near Eastern Question . 207 

B. The Congress of Berlin 212 

C. The Treaty of Berlin 213 

D. Diplomatic Results*of the Congress of Berlin . . 215 

i. The Dual Alliance 219 

ii. The Triple Alliance 220 


European Development, 1880-1890: I, Great Britain, 

France, Russia, and the Near East . . 224-254 

A. Great Britain 226 

i. Parliamentary Reform Bill 228 

ii. Irish Home Rule 228 

iii. Egyptian Policy 231 

iv. The Salisbury Ministry 234 

V. Death of Disraeli 285 

vi. Effect of Great Britain's Policy of Splendid Isola- 
tion upon the International Situation . 236 

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B. France 287 

i. Domestic Politics 287 

ii. Foreign Policy : Colonial Expansion . . • 241 

C. Russia 241 

D. The Near East 246 

i. The Execution of the Terms of the Treaty of 

Berlin 246 

ii. Bulgaria 248 

iii. The Effect of the Balkan Changes upon the Inter- 
national Situation 252 


EuBOPEAN Development, 1880-1890: II, The Powebs of 

THE Tbiple Alliance 255-279 

A. Italy 255 

i. Internal Developments 256 

ii. Foreign Policies 258 

B. Austria-Hungary 261 

i. The Dual Empire ..>.... 261 

ii. Austria 262 

iii. Hungary . . . * 263 

C. Germany 264 

i. Bismarck's Domestic Policies .... 265 

ii. Bismarck and the Foreign Situation . . 271 

iii. William II and the Resignation of Bismarck . 274 


The For&iation of a Defense against German Hegemont 

IN EuBOPE 281-474 


International Affairs in Extrope, 1890-1905 . . . 288-316 

, A. Formation of the Thiol Entente 288 

/ B. Effect of the Dual Entente upon the International 

Situation 286 

C. Attitude of Germany toward the Dual Entente, 1891- 

1900 289 

i. Internal Affairs in France 290 

ii. French Colonial Policy 292 

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iii. Russian Colonial Expansion S93 

iv. German Attitude toward Great Britain . . 294 
D. The Formation of the Entente Cordiale ... 295 
i. Trade Bivaky between Great Britain and Ger- 
many . . . . . . . 295 

ii. German Naval Increase 299 

iii. Grerman Colonial Development .... 302 

iv. Effect of German Activities upon Great Britain S04 
V. Diplomatic Situation in Great Britain and France 

leading up to the Entente Cordiale . . . 308 

(1) Internal Conditions in France .... 309 

(2) Foreign Policy of France 312 

vi. The Formation of the Entente Cordiale . 314 


Coix>NiAL £ntebfri8Es 317-340 

A. European Economic Conditions which favored Colonial 

Enterprises 317 

B. The Field for Colonization 

i. Africa 320 

ii. Asia 321 

C. Status of the European Nations at the Beginning of 

the Colonial Rivalry: Great Britain, France, 

Grermany, Italy, Russia 327 

D. Colonization in Africa 

i. Before 1890 328 

ii. After 1890 334 


C010NIAI4 RiVALRT IN Asia, and the Russo-Japanese Wab 341-364 

A« Russo^apanese Rivalry in Asia 

i. Russian Expansion 341 

ii. The Chino-Japanese War and its Results . 343 

iii. Chinese Affairs 346 

iv. Russian Relations with China; Japanese Inter- 
vention 347 

V. Outbreak of the Russo-Japanese War . . . 348 

B. The Russo-Japanese War 350 

i. Japanese Plan of Operation 350 

ii. Comparative Armaments 351 

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iii. Naval Operations 353 

iv. Military Operations 854 


IE Tbiple Entente 365-387 

A. The Moroccan Crisis 365 

i. The Algeciras Conference 370 

ii. The Algeciras Treaty 371 

\y^> Great Britain's Naval Preparation to resist German 

, Aggression 373 

//C. Great Britain's Diplomatic Preparation to resist Ger- 
man Aggression 377 

i. Anglo-Russian Hostility 378 

ii. Advantages of Anglo-Russian Friendship for Great 

Britain 379 

iii. Advantages of Anglo-Russian Friendship for 

Russia 379 

iv. The Anglo-Russian Entente .... 384 

D. The Triple Entente 385 


The States of Europe, 1905-1911 : I, Great Britain 

A. Final Years of Unionist Government 

B. Liberal Success (1906) 

C. Liberal Program, 1906-1909 

D. The Budget and Finance Bill of 1909 

E. Conflict Between The Two Houses 

F. The Parliament Bill of 1911 



The States op Europe, 1905-1911 : IT, The Continental 

States 411-437 

A. France 411 

B. Russia 420 

C. Austria-Hungary 425 

i. The Struggle for Hungarian Independence . . 425 

ii. Electoral Reform in Hungary .... 428 

>^ii. Electoral Reform in Austria . . . . 431 

'\ Aj, Germany 434 

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The Cbisis of 1908 

A. The Near Eastern Situation 

B. The Turkish Revolution 

C. The TSosnia-Herzegovina Crisis 


Conditions in Morocco .... 
A. Internal Dissensions in Morocco 

German Interest in Moroccan Situation 
i. The Casablanca Incident 
ii. The Berlin Agreement, 1909 
The French Expedition to Fez . 

D. German Intervention in Morocco : the Agadir Incident 

E. The Moroccan Convention and the Congo Convention 







The Conflict of Alliances 



The Neab Eastern Problhsi, 1911-1913 .... 476 

A. The Turco-Italian War, 1911-1912 .... 476 

B. The First Balkan War 483 

C. The Second Balkan War 496 


Th^^£ve of the Great WAr 504-538 

y^ A. Unrest in the Balkans 504 

i. Greece . . 504 

ii. Bulgaria 506 

iii. Serbia . . 507 

iv. Effect of Balkan Uniest upon Austria-Hungary and 

Russia ........ 508 

B. Domestic Problems in European States . 511 

i. Great Britain — Irish Home Rule . . . 511 

ii. France 518 

iii. Germany 524 

C. General International Situation in Europe . . . 530 

i. Increase of Armament 580 

ii. German Diplomacy 531 

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The Outbbeak of the Great War 

A. The Murders at Serajevo 

B. The Austro-Hungarian Ultimatum 

i. Austro-Hungarian and German Motives 
ii. The Serbian Reply .... 

C. Declaration of War, Austria-Hungary tw. Serbia 

D. Declaration of War, Germany vs. Russia and France 




The Expansion of the Field of Conflict . . . 562-579 

A. Great Britain M% 

B. Italy 57S 

Bibuography 581 

Index 591 

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rxcnfo PAoa 

The Germanies 30 

Campaign in Schleswig-Holstein, 1864 82 

Sketch Map to Illustrate Austro-Pnissian War, 1866 ... 100 

K0niggrlltz Morning, July 3, 1866 108 

Sketch Map to Illustrate Franco-German War .... 14S 
Gravelotte-St. Privat, 18th August, 1870 . . .- . .146 

The Battle of Sedan, 1 September, 1870 150 

Germany, 1871-1914 .174 

Europe, 1871 180 

Sketch Map to Illustrate Russo-Turkish War, 1877-1878 . .198 

The Balkan SUtes, 1856-1912 214 

Austna-Hungary, 1914 262 

The Bagdad Raihoad 302 

Africa, 1914 334 

Asia, 1914 342 

Sketch Map to Dlustrate Russo-Japanese War, 1904-1905 . 350 

LiaoYang 358 

Sketch Map to Illustrate Battle of Mukden, 23d February-9th 

Maroh, 1905 360 

Ottoman Empire and the Balkan States 496 

Ireland 512 

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FROM 186« TO 1914 


The chief interest in international affairs in Europe 
during the half century preceding the outbreak of the Great 
War revolves about the political ambitions and methods of 
the Prusso-German state. At the beginning of this period 
Prussia, the least of the five Great Powers in Europe, was 
inhabited by a capable, energetic, industrious, and on the 
whole contented people, apparently satisfied with their 
international status and intensely desirous of pursuing 
their natural course of development along peaceful lines: 
at the close of this period Germany, the greatest military 
power the world has ever known, was under the guidance 
of an unscrupulous and aggressive minority who, dissatis- 
fied with any position in European politics or world politics 
less than that of dictator, were willing to embroil Germany 
in war to gain their ends. The German people at large 
remained the same, capable, energetic, industrious, and 
peaceful, but German diplomacy had acquired a new char- 
acter. The abnormally rapid development of its territory, 
population, commerce, and resources, its easy and over- 
whelming victories in war, and its sensational successes in 
international politics led the governmejjjb, of Germany into 
the belief that Germany was a super-nation, directly endowed 
with rights and privileges which all other nations must 
recognize and accept, and that they (the government) were 
the persons intrusted with the duty of establishing and 
maintaining these superior German rights. They were 
B 1 

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2 \ '. : /- •• :• : FOREWORD 
. - - * • • •' 

aided in their purposes by the fact that the German people, 
although not materially changed in character, had become 
accustomed through long generations of obedience to state 
authority to accept unquestioningly the decisions and dic- 
tation of their government. The successes of the unscrupu- 
lous diplomacy of Bismarck in the years between 1862 and 
1890 gave a warrant for the arbitrary authority exercised 
by the government in foreign affairs after 1890. The people 
of Germany, having seen the power, prestige, and prosperity 
which resulted from Bismarck's autocratic regime, were 
inclined to trust blindly the supposedly superior wisdom 
of their governors. And these governors, intrenched in 
their positions by an outworn autocratic system (albeit 
with democratic forms), rode down ruthlessly all criticism 
and opposition and proffered the gage of battle for suprem- 
acy in European and world politics. 

The events accompanying the change in the aims and 
methods of German diplomacy are divisible into four stages : 
— 1, the coalescence of the German states, with Prussia 
at their head, into an empire so powerful as to be able to 
dictate European policy ;, ^, the maintenance by construc- 
tive measures of internal* policy and by acute diplomacy 
of Germany's hegemony in European politics ; 3, the rec- 
ognition by the other great powers outside of German 
influence of the dangers of continued German leadership, 
and the consequent formation of a defensive coalition ; and 
4, the challenge of Germany and her allies to this coali- 
tion, resulting in the Great War, 

The first period, extending from the beginning of Bis- 
marck's chancellorship in 1862 through the formation of 
the Geitaan Empire and the first years of its prosperity 
(1875), is in many ways the most important. The dominat- 
ing personality of Bismarck in Prussia, accompanied by 
the extraordinary success of his diplomacy, established the 
ideals of the government of Germany for the subsequent 
periods. For five years at the beginning of this period 

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(1862-1867), Bismarck governed Prussia with little regard 
for that constitution which was supposed to guard the 
people's liberties ; during this period he deliberately brought 
about three wars — the Danish (1864), the Austrian (1866), 
and the French (1870) — to increase the power and prestige 
of Prussia; in the pursuit of his aims for his country, he 
destroyed the dictatorship which the Austrian Hapsburgs 
had so long been accustomed to exercise over the German 
states, and he toppled the French Einperor from his throne ; 
and at the last he was the chief instrument in binding the 
states of Germany into the most powerful empire in Europe, 
and in putting the imperial crown upon the head of the 
King of Prussia. The policy of blood and iron justified 
itself by these results. Bismarck became the idol of the 
Prusso-German people. His diplomatic methods, dishonest 
and unscrupulous as they often were according to his own 
accounts, were accepted on the authority of his success as 
necessary and proper, and became the study and standards 
of German diplomats of a later period. 

During the second stage, extending from 1875 to Bis- 
marck's enforced retirement from active political life in 
1890, the German chancellor continued to be the dominating 
figure. His task, however, was diflferent. He had gained 
in the momentous events of 1862 to 1875 the position of 
supremacy which he desired for the Prusso-German state: 
it was his aim now to consolidate its resources and to main- 
tain its prestige. Such a disturbance in the European 
family of nations as had been caused by his policy in the 
first stage was certain to cause suspicions and jealousies of 
Gennany's ambitions — he had to allay these and steer 
for the new nation a peaceful course while it became ac- 
customed to its conditions. His statesmanship during the 
great constructive period of fifteen years was not less notable 
than that of the previous thirteen, but it was entirely dif- 
ferent and much more admirable. His efforts in this stage, 
too, were crowned with astounding success. In domestic 

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affairs, he furthered industrial and social measures which 
had much to do with the marvelous advance of Germany 
in material prosperity and unity of sentiment. In foreign 
affairs, he succeeded in retaining the friendship of Russia, 
even during the trying years following the Congress of 
Berlin, and in keeping France isolated and helpless. When 
he laid down his authority in 1890, Germany was still the 
supreme power on the continent of Europe ; — the mainte- 
nance of this supremacy for nineteen years is a convincing 
evidence of his genius. 

The third phase b^an with Bismarck's enforced retire- 
ment from political life in 1890 and lasted until 1911. The 
new Emperor of Germany, William 11, proposed to be ruler 
in fact as well as in name, and to keep a firm control of the 
imperial policy. His inexperience, however, was fatal to 
Bismarck's plans. Within a few years Russia and France 
had concluded a hard and fast offensive and defensive treaty ; 
a decade later Great Britain and France ended a century of 
discord and misunderstanding by concluding an entente ; and 
in 1907 Russia and Great Britain completed the triangle by 
coming to an agreement upon the most menacing of the 
issues that existed between them. Thus German diplomacy 
had allowed a hostile Triple Entente to be formed against 
the central empire. Though avowedly defensive in nature, 
this Entente was capable of being converted into an of- 
fensive alliance at an instant's notice. Germany's recourse, 
when her diplomacy failed, was to her armaments. Her 
government, looking back to the diplomacy of Bismarck in 
the years when he established Prusso-German hegemony 
in Europe, prepared to revert to this policy of blood and 
iron to maintain its hegemony in the face of a hostile coali- 
tion. Its ambitions now transcended the bounds of German 
territory in Europe and extended to distant overseas 
colonies. Germany was to be, not only dominant in Euro- 
pean politics, but dominant in world politics as well. With 
such purposes the government took measures to strengthen 

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enormously the German army and to put upon the ocean a 
navy second only to that of England. 

The final stage, from 1911 to 1914, is the shortest of the 
four. As the aims and ambitions of the German government 
became more clearly distinguishable, the determined op- 
position of Great Britain, France, and Russia became more 
inevitable. The atmosphere of mutual suspicion between 
members of the two opposing groups of powers became 
thicker. The Entente nations interpreted each move of 
Germany as a step in a deep-laid intrigue to weaken their 
power, whether such move consisted in a link of the Bagdad 
railroad, a loan to Turkey, or a concession in China ; and 
similarly, the German government viewed every move of 
the Entente powers as an effort to thwart Germany's legiti- 
mate aspirations to a "place under the sun" appropriate 
to her size and power, whether such move consisted in an 
Anglo-Russian sphere of influence in Persia, or a French 
protectorate in Morocco. Under such conditions the con- 
flict could not long be delayed. In the summer of 1914 
a relatively insignificant quarrel between Austria-Himgary 
and Serbia was accepted by the German leaders as an op- 
portunity to assert German dictatorial rights in Europe. 
No doubt both Germany and Austria-Hungary hoped that 
no war would result, and that Russia — the nation whose 
vital interests were most immediately affected — would 
retire from her position, but the Central Powers ran con- 
sciously the risk of war. With startling rapidity the sit- 
uation developed until on August 1 the Great War began. 

Such, briefly stated, are the four stages of the period of 
European history extending from 1862 to 1914. In our 
account of the details of these stages, we have at the begin- 
ning laid all emphasis upon the history of Prussia, subor- 
dinating the account of events in the other states of Europe 
except as those events were directly affected by Prussia. 
Later in our account we have attempted to treat more fully 
the course of development in the other states, still limiting 

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our story, however, to those facts which bore especially 
upon the international political situation. In the final 
chapters, the developments in Germany, while still prom- 
inent, are not stressed more than those in the other great 
states. We have thus consciously tried to represent by 
space and emphasis the relative importance of the individual 
states in the international history of Europe, 

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As we look back over the history of the last half century 
in Europe and strive to arrange events in their just per- 
spective, the part taken by Prussia, and by one man in 
particular in Prussia, emerges inevitably as the main theme 
of our narrative. Bismarck deserves the emphasis of 
space and position. He not only molded the course of 
events in his own coimtry, but shaped the history of Euro- 
pean international relations for a generation. His was 
the career X of the super-diplomat. Often not admirable 
in his means, purposes, or methods, he has been judged by 
posterity according to his success in raising the prestige, 
and securing the position, of his own country. He stamped 
his character upon his time. It is fitting, therefore, that a 
consideration of contemporary history should begin with 
Prussia and Bismarck. 


In 1857 the weak and vacillating King of Prussia, Fred- 
erick William IV, who had during his reign disappointed 
the hopes of all loyal Prussians by his policies, became 
afflicted with mental disease. Since he had no children, 
his brother, William, became Regent. A year later the 
King's disease was pronounced incurable, so that the Regency 
became equivalent to the actual reign. In 1861 the King 
died and the Regent ascended the throne as William I of 


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Prussia. With his accession began the greatest period of 
Prussian history. 

Prussia in 1860 was just emerging into a happier condi- 
tion from a period of ill government. The revolution of 
1848 and 1849 had left the country with a constitution, 
but the provisions of that document were far from satis- 
factory to the liberal elements among thinking people. 
It gave Prussia a parliament, the lower house of which was 
elected by the votes of all men over twenty-five in the king- 
dom, but by a unique and ingenious method of indirect 
election the power was placed safely in the hands of the 
wealthy classes. According to this system, popularly 
known as the Prussian three-class system, the voters in 
each district were divided into three classes according to 
the amoimt of taxes they paid, and each class was given 
an equal representation in the convention which elected 
the member of parliament for the district. Since the 
wealthy persons dominated the two upper classes of the 
electorate, they were able consistently to dictate the ap- 
pointment of one of their own political opinion to the 
parliament. Furthermore, the upper house, or House of 
Lords {Herrenhaus)^ was packed by hideboimd conserva- 
tives, determined to exert every effort to retain their age- 
long feudal privileges in spite of any attacks by the liberals. 
These conservatives, "Junkers" as they were called, had 
the tacit support of the weak King Frederick William IV. 
Vexatious steps were constantly taken to suppress liberal 
propaganda. The provisions of the constitution were 
skillfully "interpreted" by the agents of the King to suit 
their own reactionary ends ; liberal meetings were checked 
and liberal publications suppressed; the mails were rifled 
in the search for treasonable statements; an elaborate 
system of espionage was kept up; arbitrary arrest and 
imprisonment were not infrequently reverted- to; and 
known liberals were persecuted. 

And yet during these years — "the most shameful in 

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the history of Prussia," as one who lived at the time called 
them — some very encouraging features were noticeable. 
Prussia did retain her constitution, even though it was 
misinterpreted and in cases ignored, and was thus a grade 
more liberal than her rival, Austria. Furthermore, Prussia 
had definitely put herself at the head of the German states 
by her success in organizing and maintaining the customs 
union (ZoUverein), which had benefited enormously the 
economic development throughout Germany. And most 
important of all, even under the reactionary political regime, 
Prussia, in common with other German states, had pros- 
pered amazingly. During the decade from 1860 to 1860 
were laid the solid foundations for the phenomenal eco- 
nomic growth which later made Germany the marvel of 
modem times. In a comparatively brief period Prussia 
changed from an agricultural country to a country whose 
chief wealth was in its industrial enterprises. New capital 
flowed in for development purposes; business expanded; 
the mineral wealth was prospected and its mining actively 
begun; railways were actively eirtended; and foundries 
and factories sprung up in all favorable locations. 

After the reactionary political policies of Frederick Wil- 
liam rV, all classes of people hailed the inauguration of 
a new king with delight. William I was a tall, stately, 
handsome man, of military bearing and habits. He had in- 
deed been a soldier all his life, serving at the age of seven- 
teen against Napoleon in 1814, and remaining closely con- 
nected with the army through all the succeeding years. He 
was now [1860] sixty-three years old, a man slow of thought 
but clear and thorough, deeply religious, able with unprej- 
udiced mind to estimate the abilities of his advisers, and 
gifted with a rare trust in and loyalty to his subordinates. 
Although not quick to initiate a policy, when once convinced 
of its wisdom and justice he was tenacious of his convic- 
tions, unqualifiedly brave in action, and steadfast in his 
endiurance of opposition. In political principle he was a 

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monarch of the ancien rSgime, with all the convictions of 
the divine origin of kings that inspired a Louis XIV or a 
Frederick the Great. Yet a high sense of honor forbade 
him to infringe consciously upcto the elements of the con- 
stitution which had been granted to Prussia. He care- 
fully explained his position at the coronation ceremonies in 
K5nigsberg: "The Kings of Prussia receive their crowns 
from God. I shall therefore take my crown to-morrow 
from the Lord's table and place it on my head " ; and again 
on the succeeding day when he took the crown : "I am the 
first King to mount the throne since it was surrounded 
with modem institutions; but not forgetting that the 
crown comes only from God, I have shown . . . that I have 
received it from His hands." He sought to establish in 
Prussia royal government, and not parliamentary govern- 
ment; to strengthen monarchical tendencies rather than 
popular tendencies. 

The heart of the new King was with his army. It was 
on the issue of army reform that he began a conflict with 
his parliament, during which he called to his aid the great 
chancellor, Bismarck, whose name is always hnked with his 
in history. No sooner was William certain of his position 
than he instituted measures for military reform. Although 
throughout his long reign he customarily yielded to his 
e3q)erienced ministers in the realms of diplomacy and in- 
ternal administration, in military afiPairs he had every reason 
to consider himself an expert. No one understood the 
deficiencies of the existing practices and the causes better 
than he. No one appreciated more keenly than he the 
fact that the unpreparedness of the nation was responsible 
for the humiliation of Prussia before Austria during the 
previous decade. He realized that the Prussian standing 
army of 200,000 supported by 400,000 reserves was in- 
sufficient to enable her to play the great part he believed 
she should take in European affairs. 

The Prussian military system was still nominally on the 

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basis established by the genius, Schamhorst, during the 
bitter years following Napoleon's victory at Jena. But 
no changes had been made to adjust the working of the 
scheme to the growth of the nation in wealth and popula- 
tion. Hence, although nominally service was universal and 
compulsory, actually a large proportion of the youths who 
came of age for service were refused annually, so that the 
size of the standing army had long remained practi- 
cally stationary. The nation which in 1860 had a popula- 
tion of 18,000,000 was defended by the same size annual 
levies as those raised in 1814 from a population of about 
11,000,000. Of the more than 150,000 youths who annu- 
ally came of age for military service, only 40,000 were 

With the idea of furthering reform, William during his 
regency appointed von Moltke head of the Prussian general 
staff and von Roon, a great organizing genius, minister of 
war. They assisted him in the preliminary plans for mili- 
tary reform. William wished to take all the youths physi- 
cally qualified — amoimting to about 65,000 annually — form 
new regiments from them, and increase the period of en- 
listment. He would thus impose the greater part of the 
burden of military service upon the young men of the 
country rather than upon the older men in the reserve force, 
and, by lengthening the term of service, would materially 
increase the number of effectives under arms. Prussia 
imder his system would soon have an active army of 400,000 
and would, in case of hostilities, not be forced to call upon 
the middle-aged men of the reserve. For the equipment 
and maintenance of the new regiments to be formed, and for 
the right to increase the term of service, the Sling, under 
the provisions of the constitution, had to go to his parlia- 
ment. The Kberal majority therein did not look with favor 
either upon the increase of the army or the lengthening of 
the term of service. Although grudgingly, and for only a 
year at a time, it approved the expenditures for the first 

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few years, it held over him the possibility of rejecting the 
system and refusing the budget. In 1862 the crisis of the 
issue was reached and its full political significance revealed. 
With his assumption of the crown the preceding year, Wil- 
liam I felt more strongly than before the necessity of carry- 
ing his point for good and all. The recent elections, however, 
had increased the number of the Progressives who consti- 
tuted the backbone of the opposition to the government. 
The chamber had, immediately after convening, disapproved 
the plan for military reorganization. William I had then 
dissolved the chamber and ordered new elections. Although 
his agents strained every nerve to increase the body of 
government supporters in the chamber, the people stood 
loyally by their representatives and elected an overwhelming 
number of the Progressives. The issue was rapidly shaping 
itself into a contest between the royal prerogative and the 
will of parliament. The new chamber showed its temper 
immediately after it met. It decided by the enormous 
majority of 308 to 10 (March 23, 1862) to strike out of the 
budget the sum which had been appropriated the preceding 
year for the maintenance of the new regiments, and which, 
according to custom, had been incorporated in the budget 
for the coming year. Since these regiments, were already 
in existence, the refusal of funds would mean the disbanding 
of the organizations and the definite defeat of all that the 
King believed most essential for the welfare of the state. 
The military issue was seen clearly now to involve a greater 
political issue. The question was : in a matter of funda- 
mental importance to the state, shall the King or shall the 
Parliament have the decision? "King or Parliamemt," 
it was put in short. 

At this juncture the King could see no honorable outlet. 
He was prepared to abdicate, had indeed already drawn 
up the formal paper, when some of his advisers urged him 
to call to the ministry as a last resort Count Otto von 
Bismarck. Although Bismarck had never previously been 

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in the Prussian ministry, he was experienced in poUtical 
and diplomatic life, and had gained a rare reputation for 
unqualified loyalty to his monarch and for audacity and 
daring in trying situations. Bismarck has given us in his 
own words the scene when he was called upon to assume 
the post of head of the ministry. 

"As a matter of fact, however, the idea of the King's abdica- 
tion was fresh to me when I was received at Babelsberg on Sep- 
tember 22, and the situation only became clear to me when his 
majesty defined it in some such words as these : *I will not reign 
if I cannot do it in such a fashion as I can be answerable for to 
(jod, my conscience, and my subjects. But I cannot do that if 
I am to rule according to the will of the present majority in parlia- 
ment, and I can no longer find any ministers prepared to conduct 
my government without subjecting themselves and me to the 
parliamentary majority. I have therefore resolved to lay down 
my crown, and have already sketched out the proclamation of 
my abdication, based on the motives to which I have referred.' 
The King showed me the document in his own handwriting lying 
on the table, whether already signed or not I do not know. 

"I replied that his majesty had been acquainted ever since 
May with my readiness to enter the ministry ; I was certain that 
Roon would remain with me on his side, and I did not doubt that 
we should succeed in completing the cabinet, supposing other 
members should feel themselves compelled to resign on account 
of my admission. After a good deal of consideration and dis- 
cussion, the King asked me whether I was prepared as minister 
to advocate the reorganization of the army, and when I assented, 
he asked me further whether I would do so in opposition to the 
majority in parUament and its resolutions. When I asserted 
my willingness, he finally declared, 'Then it is my duty, with 
your help, to attempt to continue the battle, and I shall not ab- 


The appointment of no man in Prussia could have more 
sharply emphasized the King's decision to uphold his royal 
prerogative against the will of the lower chamber. For 
Bismarck was a nobleman born and bred, stamped by speech 
and act with the stamp of a royalist adherent. 

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Otto von Bismarck first made himself conspicuous fof 
his adherence to the royalist cause in the Estates General 
summoned by King Frederick William IV in 1847. Bis- 
marck was at that time a youjig man of thirty-two ; he had 
received a university training at Gottingen ; had tried the 
taste of diplomatic life and had soon rebelled against its 
routine and drudgery; had retired to the management of 
his family's estate and by occasional wild pranks gained 
the reputation in his district of being the "mad Bismarck** ; 
and finally, when he showed signs of settling down, had 
accepted one of the many local political offices. He was 
the type of the rough and masterful country squire, inspired 
with a fanatical loyalty to the person of the King and to 
the institution of Kingship. Nobleman though he was, he 
was not unpopular among the coimtry folk. He was a 
young man of abnormal size, strength, and agility ; he had 
received a medal for bravery for plunging into a river on 
one occasion at the risk of his life to save a drowning groom ; 
he had read widely ; if occasionally he was one of a crowd 
of roisterers, it was considered but a sign of the healthy 
animal energy and spirits of the man. 

Although the Estates General which Bismarck attended 
in 1847 as the representative for his district was summoned 
by the King merely to legalize by its approval a loan for 
the introduction of railways in Prussia, when once convened 
it extended its discussion to the current political problems. 
Bismarck listened, at first in silence and with some dismay, 
to the debates. The liberals had no idea of cooperating 
with the King. Just as the Estates General when convened 
in France in 1789 had immediately assumed the right to 
discuss matters foreign to the immediate issue {i.e. the 
raising of money), so the Estates General in Prussia seemed 
headed toward revolution by the same general course. Ever 
a man of indomitable courage, Bismarck, even though a 
Junker without experience or reputation beyond the limits 
of his own district, could not continue silent in the presence 

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of such tendencies. He was roused, first by the continued 
reference to EngUsh institutions, to protest that the analogy 
between England and Prussia did not hold : 

"Parallels with foreign countries have always something dis- 
agreeable. ... At the Revolution (i.e. 1688), the English people 
were in a very different condition from that of Prussia to-day; 
after a century of revolution and civil war, it was in a position to 
be able to give away a crown and add conditions which William 
of Orange accepted. On the other hand, we are in possession of 
a crown whose rights were actually unlimited, a crown held by the 
grace not of the people but of God, and which of its own free-will 
has given away to the people a portion of its rights — an example 
rare in history.** 

And again, speaking in another debate : 

"For me, the words 'by the Grace of God,* which Christian 
rulers add to their name, are no empty phrase ; I see in them a con- 
fession that the Princes desire to wield the scepter which God has 
given them according to the will of God on earth." 

He was in the minority, a decided minority, so that words 
like these reaffirming the ancient principle of the divine 
right of kings called for a high moral courage at the time. 
He became a marked man among the liberals and the hope 
of the unyielding royalists. His friends were ready to 
applaud, whereas his opponents held him up to scorn as a 
reactionary, an exponent of medievalism in government. 
The King himself, though forced by the exigencies of the 
situation to disregard him at the time, later showed in a 
marked way his personal pleasure at the language of his new 

In the very next year, 1848, the revolution which had 
begun in Paris spread to Berlin. The King became virtually 
a prisoner in his palace, forced to grant to Prussia a con- 
stitution. These startling events again aroused Bismarck. 
The monarchy which as an institution he honored was dis- 
graced, and the King whom as a person he loyally loved was 
humiliated. With patriotic fervor he wrote and sent to 

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the King a letter filled with expressions of fealty and devo- 
tion, and then hurried to Berlin to offer his sword for his 
monarch's defense. He was ready to raise the peasants 
in his own district and summon them to him at the capital, 
but in Berlin he found that the King had already nullified 
the efforts of loyalists by his own desertion of their cause. 
Berlin was terrorized. The analogy of the French revolu- 
tion was in everybody's mind. Bismarck himself was in 
danger of his life. "Being known, since the days of the 
United Diet" (i.e. the Estates General), "to many people 
by sight," he writes, "I considered it advisable to shave 
my beard and put on a broad-brimmed hat with a colored 
cockade." Yet his personal danger did not influence him 
to betray his principles in the slightest. As he sat in the 
new Estates General convened to make arrangements for 
the elections under the recently granted constitution, and 
as an address was proposed thanking the King for his con- 
cessions, Bismarck was one of the two members who voted 
against the address, saying : 

"'I have not changed my opinion in the last six months; the 
past is buried, and I regret more bitterly than any of you that no 
human power can reawaken it, now that the Crown itself has cast 
the earth on its coflSn." 

During the summer he and a devoted group of royalists, 
still irreconcilable, founded the New Prussian Gazette or, 
as it is usually called, the Kreuz Zeitungy that they might 
have an organ for the full and free expression of their opin- 
ions. They became the center of the conservative opposi- 
tion, and their paper its ofiicial mouthpiece. In the autumn 
the King, to the delight of the royalists, gained the courage 
to use the army to put an end to the anarchical conditions 
in Berlin. The assembly was dissolved, the King replaced 
the constitution which he had been forced to grant with one 
of his own choice, and convened a new assembly to ratify it. 
Bismarck was mentioned to the King at this time for the 

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ministry, but the King returned the memorandum with the 
significant note: "Red reactionary; smells of blood; will 
be useful later." 

Bismarck sat in the successive assemblies from 1849 to 
1851, taking a most active part in the debates. He per- 
sisted in his aggressive royalism, criticizing unendingly 
all liberal measures. His one ideal was to maintain the 
individuality and position of Prussia foremost among the 
German states. His horizon was rapidly widening, however, 
in his parliamentary experience, for he became involved in 
debates on questions affecting Prussia's policies outside of 
Prussia proper, affecting Prussia's position in the German 
Confederation. And in these debates as in debates upon 
domestic policy he evinced an unwavering faith in the ulti- 
mate destiny of his country, whatever loss of prestige it 
might temporarily suffer. 

These characteristics became especially prominent in the 
debates of the Prussian assembly during the years 1849 
and 1850. The constitutional assembly of delegates froni 
all the German states had convened in Frankfort in 1848, 
and, after great difficulties, had evolved a German constitu- 
tion binding into one empire the German states outside of 
Austria, and had, in April of 1849, offered the imperial crown 
to King Frederick William IV. The King hesitated. Ac- 
ceptance meant war with Austria, for Austria would never 
consent peaceably to a rival German empire which should 
be equal or greater than herself in numbers and power. 
Frederick William finally declined, giving as his reason his 
repugnance to universal suffrage which was a provision of 
the constitution, and his unwillingness to accept a title and 
authority bestowed and bestowable by a popular assembly. 
This decision of the King was debated in the Prussian 
assembly, where Bismarck had his seat, and an address was 
moved to declare the Frankfort constitution in force and to 
request the King to accept the crown. Bismarck passion- 
ately defended the King. In a notable speech he said: 

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"The Frankfort constitution bore upon its brow the broad 
impress of popular sovereignty, and incited the King to hold his 
free crown as a mere fief from the people, which simply meant 
the extinction of his power. The Frankfort crown might be very 
brilliant, but the gold which gave it genuineness must first be got 
by melting down the Prussian crown." 

The liberals felt the most intense anger at this speech. 
They caused to be printed and distributed ten thousand 
copies of it, in order that the people might appreciate the 
principles of the reactionary element in Prussia. 

Again after the humiliation of OlmUtz, Bismarck cham- 
pioned the King's cause. At 01mutz» the Prussian King 
yielded his own plans for the regeneration of Gernoiany 
before the threats of Austria. All liberals in Germany 
were bitterly disappointed. In the Prussian chamber the 
liberals moved that the King be requested to dismiss the 
ministers responsible for the Olmtttz surrender. Bismarck 
felt the humiliation as keenly as his colleagues, but believed 
that Prussia was not ready for the decisive struggle with 
Austria. In a speech he said : 

"If Prussia had gone to war for her union idea, ^— that mongrel 
product of timid rulers and tame revolution, which would have 
the effect of mediatizing her under the chambers of the petty 
states, — she would only have resembled the Englishman who 
fought a victorious combat with a sentinel in order to be able to 
hang himself in the sentry-box, a right he claimed for himself and 
every free Briton.'* 

So Bismarck kept his gaze focused on the greatness of 
Prussia, Prussia before all else. "Prussians we are, and 
Prussians we will remain," he said in one of his speeches. 
"I know that in these words I but express the creed of the 
Prussian army and of the majority of my countrymen; 
and I hope to God that we shall also remain Prussians long 
after this bit of paper (referring to the German constitu- 
tion) has moldered away like a withered autumn leaf." 
In July of 1851 Bismarck was for the first time admitted 

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into the inner circles of governmental affairs. He was 
appK)inted Prussian envoy to the Federal Diet at Frankfort. 
The American, John Lothrop Motley, fellow student at 
Gottingen and lifelong friend, thus writes of Bismarck's 
own accoimt of his appointment : 

** In summer of 1851 he told me that the minister, Manteuffel, 
asked him one day abruptly, if he would accept the post of Am- 
bassador at Frankfort, to which (although the proposition was as 
unexpected a one to him as if I should hear by the next mail that 
I had been chosen Governor of Massachusetts) he answered, after 
a moment's deliberation, *Yes,' without another word. The 
King, the same day sent for him, and asked him if he would accept 
the place, to which he made the same brief answer, 'Ja.' His 
majesty expressed a Uttle surprise that he made no inquiries or 
conditions. When Bismarck replied that anything which the 
King felt strong enough to propose to him, he felt strong enough to 
accept. I only write these details, that you may have an idea of 
the man. Strict integrity and courage of character, a high sense 
of honor, a firm religious belief, united with remarkable talents, 
make up necessarily a combination which cannot be found any 
day in any Court ; and I have no doubt that he is destined to be 
Prime Minister, unless his obstinate truthfulness, which is apt to 
be a stumbling-block for politicians, stands in his way." 

His appointment to the Frankfort diet marked a most 
significant change in his career. During the eight years 
he served therein, he was involved in international diplo- 
macy rather than in local Prussian questions; he was 
rubbing elbows with some of the most acute politicians of 
his generation and learning to "play the game'* according 
to their rules ; and he was fastening upon a few fundamental 
policies for the guidance of Prussia. His political horizon 
widened still further. 

The Frankfort Diet was a body composed of delegates 
from the sovereigns of the states in the German confedera- 
tion. Its function was to act as a congress for the consid- 
eration of issues rising between the states in the confedera- 
tion and of interests affecting the confederation as a whole. 

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In its character and organization it was a revival of the 
Diet of the Confederation, which had been established at 
the Congress of Vienna and suspended during the troubles 
of 1848. 

If Bismarck set out for Frankfort with any preconceived 
notions of the value of the Diet in the affairs of Germany, 
he was soon disillusioned. In a letter to his wife written 
soon after his arrival, he ;says : 

"Our intercourse here is nothing but mutual distrust and es- 
pionage; and then if there was only anything to spy out and 
conceal ! Nothing but miserable trifles do these people concern 
themselves about ; and the diplomatists here strike me as being 
infinitely more ridiculous with their important ponderosity con- 
cerning gathered rags of gossip than even a member of the Second 
Chamber in the full consciousness of his dignity. ... I am making 
giant strides at the art of saying nothing in a great many words. 
I write reports pages long, as rounded and polished as leading 
articles ; and if Manteuffel, after he has read them, can say what 
is in them, he can do more than I can. We all play at believing 
that each of us is crammed full of ideas and plans if he would only 
speak, and we are every one of us perfectly well aware that all of 
us together are not a hair better as to knowledge of what will 
become of Germany than Gossamer Summer. No one, not even 
the most malicious democrat, can form a conception of the char- 
latanism and self-importance of our assembled diplomacy." 

Yet once established, he enjoyed his life there. Motley 
writes of the Bismarck household : " It is one of those houses 
where every one does what one likes. The show apartments 
where they receive formal company are on the front of the 
house. Their living-rooms, however, are a salon and 
dining room at the back, opening upon the garden. Here 
there are young and old, grandparents and children and 
dogs all at once ; eating, drinking, smoking, piano-playing, 
and pistol-firing (in the garden), all going on at the same 
time. It is one of those establishments where every earthly 
thing that can be eaten or drunk is offered you; porter, 
soda-water, small beer, champagne, burgundy, or claret 

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are about all the time, and everybody is smoking the best 
Havana cigars every minute." Bismarck was able to get 
away for short trips to interesting regions in that part of 
Burope, thus varying the monotony of Frankfort existence 
and official reports. Another extract from one of his letters 
to his wife reveals a vein of romanticism and nature-love 
which in the busy years before him was, it seems, gradually 

'"Saturday afternoon I drove out with Rochow and Lynar to 
Rfldesheim ; there I took a boat, rowed out upon the Rhine, and 
swam in the moonlight, with nothing but nose and eyes out of the 
water, as far as the Rat Tower near Bingen, where the bad bishop 
came to his end. It gives one a peculiar dreamy sensation to float 
thus on a quiet warm night in the water, gently carried down by 
the current, looking above on the heavens studded with the moon 
and stars, and on each side the banks and wooded hill-tops and 
the battlements of the old castles bathed in moonlight, whilst 
nothing falls on one's ear but the gentle splashing of one's own 
movements. I should like to swim like this every evening." 

The diet itself was a hotbed of intrigue. Bismarck had 
gone there inspired with a feeling of friendship for Austria, 
because he realized that no nation in Europe had so per- 
sistently maintained the struggle against the rising hosts 
of liberalism, and had so consistently held by, the sacred 
rights of the sovereigns. He had uttered pro-Austrian 
sentiments in speeches in the assembly, as : "Prussia should 
join Austria to crush the common foe, the Revolution"; 
and again : "I consider Austria the representative and heir 
of a traditional German power which has often gloriously 
wielded the German sword." He soon found, however, 
that Austria was using the machinery of the Confederation 
to increase continually her own prestige and to humiliate 
the other German states, including Prussia. Sometimes 
this attempt at humiliation was shown in trivial ways, as 
in the assumption by the Austrian delegate of the privilege 
of smoking at the coimcil board where — before Bismarck 

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arrived — no one else dared do so ; or in the Austrian's 
studied insolence in being in n^lig^ costume when he re- 
ceived, in more or less formal audience, a delegate from 
another of the German states. At other times, Austria 
attempted to dictate arrogantly the policy of the confed- 
eration, treating all the other German states, including 
Prussia, as inferior. 

The Prussian King could not have sent to the Frankfort 
diet a man of a temper better calculated to oppose the 
Austrian presumption. When Thun, the Austrian Presi- 
dent of the Diet, began to smoke at the sittings of one of the 
commissions, Bismarck, with characteristic audacity, asked 
him for a light; when Thun received in his shirt sleeves, 
Bismarck said, "You are quite right, it is very hot," and 
removed his own coat. Poor Count Thun, after a dispute 
with Bismarck, used to retire exhausted at five in the after- 
noon ; and another of the Austrian delegates, when leaving 
Frankfort to take a post at Constantinople, remarked that 
" it would be like an Eastern dream of the blessed to con- 
verse with the wise Ali instead of Bismarck." Naturally, 
the Austrians hated Bismarck, and attempted to discredit 
him in every way possible. Insults were frequent. Qn 
one occasion, an archduke asked him whether certain 
medals he was wearing were won in the presence of the 
enemy. "Yes," answered Bismarck quickly, "all won 
before the enemy, all won right here in Frankfort." 

The trouble he caused the Austrian delegate did not, 
however, decrease his influence at the Prussian court. 
Through these years, when little rumor of his activities 
filtered through the Prussian nation as a whole, his reputa- 
tion and influence with his sovereign steadily rose. His long 
reports were models of their kind. He gradually became the 
chief adviser to the Prussian government on German affairs, 
and was used again and again upon delicate negotiations 
with other courts, thus gaining an invaluable knowledge 
of men, methods, and affairs. His advice on Prussian 

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policy more than once determined the action of his govern- 
ment during these years. For example, in the diplomacy 
leading up to the Crimean War, the question of Prussia's 
attitude became of supreme importance to the powers of 
Europe. Great Britain and France in 1854 determined on 
war, sent their fleets to the Black Sea and invited the 
cooperation of Austria. Austria, though the Russian troops 
on her border were a constant menace to her, dared not join 
the western powers without the aid of Prussia and the Ger- 
man states, so she appealed to the Diet at Frankfort. The 
issue depended wholly upon Prussia. The smaller German 
states, though they had no interest in sending their soldiers 
to the Crimea, could not have resisted the combined pressure 
of Austria and Prussia. Should Prussia side with Austria, 
or with Russia? At this crisis Bismarck was summoned 
from Frankfort to confer with the Prussian government. 
He found the palace filled with intriguers, and the vacillat- 
ing King in a fever of indecision. Bismarck's own argu- 
ments were for armed neutrality, and he carried the day. 
"What has Austria done for us," he asked, "that we should 
do police service gratis for her ? " And again : 

"Although a war with that empire (Russia) would be a serious 
matter for us, I should not attempt to say anything against it if 
it held out the prospect of yielding us a prize worthy of us. But 
the very notion appalls me that we may plunge into a sea of 
trouble and danger on behalf of Austria, for whose sins the King 
displays as much tolerance as I only hope God in Heaven will 
one day show toward mine. . . . The interest of Prussia is my 
only rule of action, and had there even been any prospect of our 
promoting this interest by taking part in the war, I should certainly 
never have been one of its opponents." 

Bismarck learned through these years to foresee with 
absolute certainty a war with Austria. Soon after the 
Peace of Paris which closed the Crimean War, he wrote a 
long report to his home government on his conception of 
what should be the Prussian foreign policy, the central idea 

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of which lay in the sentence : "It is my conviction that at 
no distant time we shall have to fight with Austria for our 
very existence, and that it is not in our power to obviate 
this." He was ready to shape all the policy of the govern- 
ment to this clearly discernible end. "My attitude towards 
Foreign Governments springs not from any antipathy,'* 
he wrote, " but from the good or evil they may do to Prussia.** 
And he went so far as to advocate at one time an alliance 
with Napoleon III (whom all Prussian leaders looked upon 
as their natural enemy) in order to be sure to overawe 
Austria, urging upon his home government "freedom from 
prejudice, that our decisions should be independent of all 
impressions of dislike or affection for Foreign States and 
their government." 

January 29, 1869, Bismarck received news that he was 
appointed ambassador to St. Petersburg. Frederick Wil- 
liam IV had in the previous year been pronounced inciu-ably 
insane and his brother, William, had assumed the regency. 
It was impolitic to start the regency with the continuance 
of Bismarck at Frankfort, for Bismarck was persistently 
opposed to Austria, and William desired the good will of 
that country. 

Bismarck jestingly referred to his transference by saying 
that he had been kaltgesteUt (placed in ice), a phrase applied 
to the cooling of champagne. His stay in the Russian 
capital was not pleasant. He was out of the current of 
German and Prussian affairs. Watching from a distance, 
he felt that his country's policy was drifting "more and more 
into the Austrian wake." He was oppressed by severe ill- 
ness during the greater part of his service, an illness which 
seems to have left him with a nervous irritability, far 
different from the robust good nature which had character- 
ized his earlier years. And yet, even here, his service was 
of great advantage to him. He widened his knowledge 
of contemporary statesmen and diplomatists, and gained 
the warm personal regard of the Czar. 

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In the conjQict which developed between the regent and 
his parliament, Bismarck's advice was again sought. He 
was the one strong man of the King's adherents. He was 
summoned back from St. Petersburg for consultation. The 
King, stiU hesitating to appoint him minister, dispatched 
him to Paris early in 1862, where he renewed his previousr j 
acquaintance with the leaders in the French nation. He had 
been there but a few months when he was summoned post- 
haste back to Berlin, where he found the King on the point 
of abdicating, as we have already described. On September 
22, 1862, he was appointed minister. 

Such was the political career of the man whom the King 
had chosen at the crisis to guide the Prussian ministry. At 
the news of his appointment, the Liberals were raised to 
the highest pitch of anger. To them, Bismarck was the 
Bismarck of 1847-1851, the "red radical" who was too 
royalist for Frederick William IV. His career since 1861, 
it must be remembered, had been in the field of governmental 
diplomacy outside of Prussia, so that even if there had 
been any change in his convictions it would not have been 
known by the home poUticians. His appointment was be- 
lieved to be a defiance to them. 


The most immediate problem which confronted Bismarck 
was, of course, that due to the opposition of the majority 
of the lower chamber of the Prussian parliament. He did 
not underestimate the dangers in this crisis. He was 
pledged in the words with which he had accepted office to 
uphold the royal prerogative and to carry through the royal 
program of military increase and reorganization. Such a 
program could only be carried through by the expenditure 
of large sums of money. Such expenditure could, under the 
constitution, be authorized only by the parliament. The 
parliament was unalterably opposed to the program, and 

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had made its attitude unmistakably evident in the debates 
on the money bill. A dissolution had been ordered, and the 
succeeding elections had served to strengthen the liberal 
opposition to the government. The country had given 
its representatives the evidence of its approval of their 
course. Government was at a deadlock at the moment. 

The issue, however, was greater than that contained in 
the mere appropriation of funds for army increase and re- 
organization. It had become a question of royal govern- 
ment versus parliamentary government. Political thinkers 
felt that Prussia was then at the parting of the ways. If 
the King were forced to modify or withdraw his measures, 
the fatal step which would give a precedent for parliamentary 
supremacy would be irrevocably taken. Henceforth, par- 
liament would always hold the control of governmental 
policies and action. On the other hand, if the King were 
able to carry out his policies despite the opposition of 
parliament, a step would be taken which would in large 
measure nullify those provisions in the constitution that had 
been thought to guarantee popular liberties. Royal govern- 
ment would take a new lease of life in Prussia : the popular 
jjovemment which the people had thought they obtained 
in Frederick William IV*s constitution would be proven an 
illusion. The awakening of the people might mean another 

Though the domestic political problem was important 
and dangerous in nature, the question of Prussia's foreign 
relations was no less so. Prussia's position in Europe was 
perilous. She could be certain of the bitter hostility of 
Austria just so long as German affairs continued under the 
confederation, for Austria would never endure Prussian 
leadership among the German states. Bismarck felt that 
Prussia was too great and proud a nation to be in Austrian 
leading-strings. Yet Prussia had no friends in Europe at 
the time Bismarck took oflBce. If Austria should league 
with France or with Russia, Prussia might be overwhelmed. 

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Foreseeing clearly as he did the inevitable conflict with 
Austria, Bismarck was confronted with the problem of find- 
ing friends for Prussia among the European nations, or at 
least of assuring himself of the neutrality of the great nations 
when the conflict should come. 

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We may well at this point turn from our consideration of 
conditions in Prussia to outline briefly the state of affairs 
in the neighboring countries of continental Europe. We 
shall thus be able to gain a general idea of the forces which 
Bismarck encountered in the field of his foreign diplomacy. 
His accurate knowledge of the strength and weakness, of 
the ambitions and fears, of the rulers and the diplomats 
in contemporary states was what enabled him at critical 
moments in Prussian international relations to gain his 
most brilliant successes. 


The conflicting influences in the Congress of Vienna after 
the overthrow of Napoleon had prevented any satisfactory 
solution of the problem involved in the creation of a govern- 
ment for the collection of states in what was known as Ger- 
many. Napoleon^s conquests had destroyed forever the Holy 
Roman Empire, and had resulted in reducing the number 
of separate states from some himdreds to thirty-nine; but 
even under the inspiration of a common opposition to the 
French conqueror these thirty-nine states had not been 
able to achieve a political unity. Those who, in the Con- 
gress of Vienna, advocated the creation of a powerful and 
unified German state out of the separate German units 
found themselves thwarted by the effort of Austria, whose 
chancellor. Prince Mettemich, believed that Austrian in- 
fluence could be more securely maintained, and Austrian 


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territory possibly expanded, if these units were bound loosely 
together in a confederation. So in the final treaty of Vienna 
provision was made for a German Confederation, whose 
thirty-nine independent states sent delegates to a common 
Diet at Frankfort-on-the-M ain. 

Unsatisfactory as this Confederation was to those who 
hoped to see a Germany, united and strong, playing its 
I>art in European affairs, it is a fact that for the next genera- 
tion the Grerman states enjoyed a measure of peace and pros- 
perity they had not known for a century. During these 
years they recovered from the successive ravages of the 
Thirty Years' War and the Napoleonic Wars. Population 
increased rapidly; the standard of living rose with the 
general .comfort and intelligence of the people; business 
expanded as the rewards of energy and application again 
seemed secure; and the material wealth of the separate 
states grew greatly. 

This rise in general prosperity and intelligence among 
the people of the German states had two important political 
effects: first, it strengthened the ranks of those who de- 
manded more liberal government in the separate states; 
and second, it inc|;eased the number of those who realized 
the benefits which would result from the creation of a unified 

The Treaty of Vienna had stipulated that the States of 
Grermany should be given constitutions. Most of the 
sovereigns had lived up to this provision, beginning with the 
Duke of Saxe- Weimar in 1816. During the ascendancy of 
Prince Mettemich, however, Austria and Prussia, the most 
powerful of the German states, withheld their constitu- 
tions, and the governments of the smaller states were in- 
clined too often to rule autocractically in spite of the con- 
stitutional guarantees. The continuance of peace and 
spread of prosperity increased the numbers of those in the 
well-to-do middle classes who desired a share in the govern- 
ment. They had the time to think on political problems ; 

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they had the education and ability to understand the nature 
of the institutions under which they lived; and they de- 
sired the power to insure their continued enjoyment of 
their constitutional privileges, and to secure the extension 
of those privileges. 

The second result of this period of prosperity was the 
growth of sentiment among the people of these states for 
German political unity. As education became more wide- 
spread, the bonds of the common race, language, and litera- 
ture were more appreciated. The masses of people in one 
state became better acquainted with the characteristics 
and ideals of those in neighboring states. The community 
of interests of all Germans was more clearly manifest to 
thinking people. The opportunities of a united Germany 
to take its place among the great nations of the world were 
evident, whereas the weakness of the existing loose and 
ineflSicient confederation prevented any advantage being 
taken of such opportunities. The strength and scope of 
the sentiment for national imity increased enormously 
during the period between 1815 and 1848. 

The wind that fanned into flame the sparks of liberalism 
in the German states came from France. February 24, 
1848, the people of Paris rose in revolt, swept Louis Philippe 
from the throne, and proclaimed a democratic republic. 
Four days later the revolutionary movement communi- 
cated itself to the first of the German states. With a speed 
that bore witness to the thorough unanimity of popular 
sentiment it spread from state to state. 

"Its course was everywhere the same. Mighty assemblies of 
the people proclaimed the demands of the times : the concession 
of all those assumed privileges of freedom, the summoning of a 
Grerman Parliament, the providing of every citizen with arms, 
and, above all, the transference of the ministerial oJBBces to cham- 
pions of the Liberal party. In violent petitions, accompanied 
sometimes by boisterous tumults in the streets and with terrible 
threats in the event of a refusal, these claims were laid before 
the ruling Princes. Nowhere did it come to acts of bloody out- 

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rage ; for in view of the imposing unanimity of the whole popu- 
lation, not a single government dared to make any resistance, 
and very soon the leaders of the Opposition everywhere occupied 
ministerial seats." (von Sybel, I. 147-148.) 

On March 13, 1848, the revolution spread to Vienna, 
and the German world was astounded by the news of the 
resignation of Prince Mettemich, the bulwark of the auto- 
cratic regime. March 18, Frederick William IV of Prussia, 
after an insurrectionary outbreak in the streets of Berlin, 
convoked the United Provincial Diet of Prussia for consulta- 
tion on the framing of a Prussian constitution. 

In the meanwhile, self-constituted leaders arranged for 
a national popularly elected assembly to meet at Frankfort 
in order to draw up a scheme for a united Germany. This 
assembly met May 18, 1848. The diflSculties in the way 
of its success were great. One strong and vociferous 
party demanded the establishment of a republic: the 
opposition advocated an empire. One group proposed the 
exclusion of both Austria and Prussia on the ground that 
their interests were irreconcilable and that no political 
unit could be created which would hold both: a second 
proposed the admission of Prussia and of the German part 
of Austria, thus excluding Hungary and keeping the new 
state homogeneous: a third proposed the exclusion of 
Austria and the inclusion of Prussia with the crown of em- 
pire bestowed upon the Bang of Prussia. Such issues, and 
the many involved questions connected with the draft of a 
constitution, caused long debates. All through the year 
1848 the assembly was in session. In the spring of 1849, it 
came to the most vital of the questions to be decided — 
the question of the monarch for the new Germany. March 
28 the vote was taken. Two hundred and ninety members 
voted for Frederick William, King of Prussia : the remainder 
did not vote at all. A deputation of thirty-two members 
was appointed to wait upon Frederick William and gain his 
acceptance of the election. 

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During the long period of the assembly's discussions, 
however, the reactionary elements had reestablished their 
authority throughout the various states of Germany. The 
Austrian army had quelled the rebellion in the Italian 
provinces and was preparing to overcome Hungary; King 
Frederick William had granted his people the coveted con- 
stitution and was now revising it to suit more his autocratic 
powers; several of the smaller states had succeeded in 
suppressing the insurrections, often with the help of troops 
from the larger states. The reSstablishment of the auto- 
cratic governments in their authority undermined the 
power of the German assembly. This assembly had never 
been oflBcially convened by the German governments ; its 
power from the beginning had been due solely to what sup- 
port it could command among the people at large. As 
soon as the evidence of this support was removed, its power 
waned. With the complete success of reaction, its power 

King Frederick William of Prussia earnestly desired 
German union, and equally earnestly desired to occupy the 
foremost place in such union. The offer which was brought 
to him from the assembly, however, was from an unrecog- 
nized and imauthorized source, and had been made, he knew, 
by only a small majority of the delegates in the assembly. 
Its acceptance would mean war with Austria and possibly 
with many other states of the old confederation. Further, 
its acceptance would put him in the position of respecting 
the will of the representatives of the people in the German 
states rather than respecting the will of the sovereigns of 
those states. After careful consideration Frederick William 
gave to the deputation a non-committal answer which it 
interpreted as a refusal. April 3, 1849, the deputation 
wended its way back to Frankfort. 

The rejection of the imperial honor by Frederick William 
ruined all the work of the assembly. Immediately after his 
decision was made known, the futility of further delibera- 

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tions WW evident. Gradually one delegation after another 
was withdrawn until the mere remnant was dispersed at 
Stuttgart, whither it had removed itself, June 18, 1849. 
Though its work seemed to have been valueless, the future 
showed that it had accomplished something. It had for 
a time centered the ambitions of all * Germans upon a 
common political end, and had struck upon the only 
way in which this end could ultimately be secured. Its 
failure was not due to its own incompetence, but to the 
rival ambitions of Austria and Prussia — in its failure 
it indicated what the difficulty was which must finally 
be overcome. 

The ferment created by the assembly did not at once die 
away. Frederick William of Prussia, though he had been 
unwilling to accept the imperial crown from what he con- 
sidered an unauthorized body, sincerely desired German 
imity. He therefore undertook to frame a union on his 
own lines, namely, a volimtary union of German sovereigns, 
with himself at its head. Gaining the consent of Hanover 
and Saxony, he called a convention of the German princes 
at Erfmrt in March, 1850, to form a new constitution for 
Germany. He found himself at once opposed by Austria, 
whose chancellor, von Schwarzenberg, made it a cardinal 
feature of his policy to increase Austrian influence among 
the German states and to humiliate Prussia. Schwarzen- 
berg set up a counter proposal, namely, the reSstablishment 
of the old Federal Diet, which in the revolutionary move- 
ments of 1848 had been necessarily suspended. He rallied 
German states into a league of his own. The feeling on 
both sides grew intensely bitter. War seemed imminent; 
orders of mobilization were issued; and Prussians were 
enthusiastic over the prospect of establishing their authority 
once for all in Germany. 

With war apparently a matter of only a few days, Frede- 
rick William and his advisers were forced to weigh care- 
fully the prospect. France was hostile, and had her armies 

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of observation ranged along Prussia's westen^ border. 
Russia was on terms of intimate friendship with Austria 
and threatened Prussia from the east. Frederick William 
felt that Prussia would have to give way. He sent Man- 
teuffel, then his chancellor, to Olmtitz to confer with 
Schwarzenberg. 'In the conference Manteuffel was com- 
pletely outwitted by the bold and skillful Austrian diplomat. 
In all essential principles Prussia was made to yield. Pro- 
vision was made for the relinquishment of Frederick Wil- 
liam's scheme for Germa i unity, and it was agreed that the 
old Federal Diet should be restored. This "Humiliation of 
Olmtitz," as it was long known among loyal Prussians, 
aroused the most intense indignation in Prussia. It was 
felt that Prussia, when her armies were ready and the 
opportunity was offered, had surrendered without a battle 
all that she could possibly have lost with a battle. 
The results enhanced Austria's position among the Ger- 
man states, and correspondingly reduced the prestige of 

These events we have outlined took place a decade before 
our history opens. An understanding of them is necessary, 
however, to appreciate the conditions in the German states 
following 1851. Everywhere the practice of governments 
slipped back into the familiar autocratic grooves. The 
liberals had apparently spent themselves in their one out- 
break of 1848 : they accepted suDenly the reestablishment 
of autocracy. The muzzle of suppression again forced a 
silence. Freedom of speech and freedom of the press 
were restricted. Arbitrary arrest and imprisonment were 
conmion. The elaborate system of espionage instituted 
in the larger states was imitated in the smaller. The 
net results of the revolutionary movements of 1848 in 
Germany were apparently nothing. The Germany of 1860 
was but little removed from the Germany of the era of 

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As we looked back a decade to gain an idea of causes of 
conditions in the German states just previous to the open- 
ing of our history, so likewise in our consideration of Austria 
we must go back to the events of 1848-1851. For by the 
events of these years, and the final success of the autoc- 
racy in reestablishing its power, were determined political 
conditions in Austria up to 1860. 

The resignation and flight of Mettemich at the first 
breath of the revolutionary storm of March, 1848, were 
signals for the disruption of the whole Mettemich system 
in the Austrian dominions. From every side, from Hun- 
gary, Bohemia, the Italian Provinces, and the provinces 
of Austria proper, came news of rioting and of liberal de- 
mands. The liberalism that had been 90 effectively bottled 
up during Metternich's long regime now burst forth with 
new life and vigor. 

The most dangerous and bloody of the revolts occurred in 
the Lombardo- Venetian provinces. The hatred of Austrian 
domination there had long been intense : the news of the suc- 
cess of the French revolutionists, and of the fall of Mettemich, 
combined to rouse the people to a frenzy. Radetzky, the 
Austrian commander, had less than 20,000 troops scattered 
through the provinces. The uprising, beginning with bloody 
street fighting in Milan, March 18, came upon him before 
he could get reenforcements. He was compelled to with- 
draw his troops to the famous Quadrilateral formed by the 
fortresses on the Adige and Mincio rivers. Venice revolted 
in his rear, and Charles Albert, King of Piedmont, rushed 
25,000 troops to the aid of the rebels in Lombardy. All of 
the Italian provinces seemed at the moment to be lost. 

While this Italian situation was at its worst, the demands 
from other parts of the empire poured in upon the Emperor. 
The Hungarian Diet, under the inspiring radical leadership 
of Kossuth, had passed on March 15th and following days 

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a series of reform laws (The March Laws) by which Hungary 
was to be practically an independent nation, united with 
Austria only by the person of the sovereign. A delegation 
of Hungarians proceeded to Vienna and, on March 31, 
received the hard-pressed Emperor's acceptance of the re- 
forms. The Czechs of Bohemia acted at the same time and, 
on March 19, dispatched their deputation to demand from 
the Emperor political equality between Czechs and Germans 
in Bohemia, freedom of thought, speech, and the press, 
and local autonomy. Their demands, too, were at once 
granted. And the people in the provinces of Austria proper 
took advantage of the situation to put forth their demands 
for a constitution, guarantees of civil liberty, and rights of 
local self-government. Again the Emperor was forced to 
yield without reserve, promulgating the constitution April 
25, 1848. Thus at all points in the empire the forces of 
revolution had been astonishingly successful: autocracy 
had yielded all demands. 

Radetzky, however, persuaded his Emperor that, could 
the Italian rebellion be quelled, the ^evolutionary move- 
ments in other parts of the empire could afterwards be 
suppressed without undue difficulty. Reenforcements were 
sent to him in Lombardy, and he undertook a campaign 
against the rebels and the Piedmontese. In the bloody 
battle of Custozza, July 24, 1848, and again the following 
spring in the great battle of Novara, March 23, 1849, 
Radetzky won decisive victories, and could, indeed, have 
invaded Piedmont but for the hostility of France and Eng- 
land. The Italian rebels dispersed: Radetzky soon re- 
stored the Austrian system in northern Italy. 

Inspired by Radetzky's success in Italy, the government 
now turned to the problem offered by conditions in other 
parts of the empire. The embarrassment caused by the 
fact that the Emperor Ferdinand had granted the demands 
of Austrians, Czechs, and Hungarians was removed by the 
abdication of Ferdinand and the elevation of his nephew 

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Francis Joseph, a boy of eighteen, to the throne. Francis 
Joseph, on the advice of his councilors, refused to recog- 
nize or accept the concessions made by his predecessor. 
Troops quickly put down the rebels in the Austrian prov- 
inces and overawed them in Bohemia. Himgary, however, 
was recognized as the most difficult problem of all. 

After winning their coveted liberal laws from the Emperor, 
the Hungarians had fallen to quarreling among themselves. 
The Magyar element, desiring to dominate the government, 
quickly alienated the other races in the country by oppres- 
sive political restrictions. The Croatians, who felt espe- 
cially aggrieved, rose in revolt. Austria took full advantage 
of the situation. The yoimg Emperor requested the aid 
of Nicholas I of Russia to quell the Hungarian rebellion; 
Austrian armies invaded Hungary from the west ; Russian 
troops poured in from the north and east ; and the unhappy 
Magyars received no aid from the people of the races they 
had antagonized. They had declared their independence 
April 14, 1849, but they were unable to maintain it against 
the combined armies sent against them. The last impor- 
tant body of Magyar troops surrendered at Vilagos August 
13, 1849. The revenge taken by the Austrian government 
was immediate and severe. Kossuth and his companions 
fled into exile ; hundreds of Magyar leaders and generals 
who were implicated in the war were summarily executed ; 
and Hungary was reduced to the position of a mere Austrian 
province, losing all the political rights she had possessed 
before the rebellion. 

The leaders of the Austrian government put into practice 
during the next ten years the lessons they deduced from the 
revolt. In effect, they believed that the revolt had proved 
the necessity of wholly eliminating racial, linguistic, and 
political distinctions within the boundaries of the empire, 
and of creating an overwhelmingly strong central govern- 
ment. Acting under this belief, they refetablished the 
Mettemich system with an imusual severity intended to 

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Germanize the entire population. Inasmuch as Hungary 
had proved the most stubborn opponent to autocrad^, 
the system, known as Bach's system from the name of the 
Austrian minister of the interior from 1849 to 1859, was 
applied to it with special thoroughness. No part of the 
ancient Himgarian constitution was recognized. No con- 
cessions were made to local racial or linguistic differ- 
ences. All of the former elected local officials were replaced 
by Germans directly appointed by the crown. Hungary 
was split up into five administrative districts in the effort 
to destroy the sentiment of unity. German was officially 
designated as the only state and official language. The 
Austrian taxation system, including some taxes never before 
levied in Himgary, was applied without change or adjust- 
ment to that country. Thus by a poUcy of racial, linguis- 
tic, and economic coercion the Austrian government en- 
deavored to force a poUtical unity. 

This policy might have been continued indefinitely had 
not events abroad forced its abandonment. Austria by 
her policy during the Crimean war had forfeited the friend- 
ship of Russia. When that war broke out in 1854, Russia 
expected that Austria, in gratitude for Russian assistance 
in conquering Hungary in 1849, would favor Russian inter- 
ests. But Austria's own vital concern in this direction was 
with the free navigation of the Danube, and the Austrian 
government feared that Russian possession of the provinces 
of Moldavia and Wallachia would imperil such freedom. 
The Austrian influence, therefore, was cast against Russia : 
indeed, Austria would have entered the war on the side of 
the alHes had it not been that Frederick William of Prussia, 
largely at Bismarck's instigation, refused Prussian assist- 
ance, and the Austrian diplomats feared that Prussia would 
take advantage of Austria's war to assert Prussian influence 
among the German states. The loss of Russia's friend- 
ship meant that Austria must increase her own strength. 
And further, the Italian war of 1859 had a direct bearing 

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upon the internal situation in Austria. Cavour, the brilliant 
minister of Victor Emmanuel of Piedmont, had enlisted the 
sympathy of Napoleon III of France in Italian liberation 
from Austria. Early in 1859 the Piedmontese began to 
mobilize for war. Austria, naturally alarmed by these 
preparations, finally sent an ultimatum April S3, 1859, 
demanding demobilization within three days. A week later 
the Austrian troops crossed the Ticino river to invade 
Piedmont. France at once declared war, and sent a large 
and well-trained army to Piedmont's assistance. In the 
short war that followed, the Austrian troops were defeated, 
notably in the battles of Magenta (June 4, 1859) and Sol- 
ferino (June 24, 1859), and were driven back to the de- 
fenses of the Quadrilateral. At this point Napoleon III 
arranged an armistice preparatory to peace. The final 
treaty provided for the cession of Lombardy to Piedmont, 
but left Venice in the hands of the Austrians. 

The failures of Austrian diplomacy and of the Austrian 
armies, and the loss of Lombardy, aroused again unrest in 
Austria. The Hungarians had never been Germanized ; the 
Bohemians were ready to demand once more their political 
rights; and the Austrian provinces desired a constitution. 
The ambitious centralization policy of the government, 
instead of strengthening the empire, had actually weakened 
it. Disaffection was rife. In the near future loomed the 
prospect of a decisive struggle with Prussia for leadership 
in Germany. The Bach system, proved a failure, col- 
lapsed after the disastrous Italian campaign ; Bach himself 
resigned; and the government began to experiment with 
liberalism in the endeavor to win by concessions the support 
of the dissatisfied elements in the empire. In a manifesto 
issued after the dismissal of Bach, the Emperor promised 
his people to end the " inherited abuses" in the empire. 

In 1860 the first attempt was made to placate the people. 
An enlarged imperial council met and drafted a constitu- 
tion for the whole empire. This constitution, published 

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October 20, 1860, and known as the October Charter, re- 
stored to the provinces their pre-revolutionary parliaments 
and institutions, and provided for an imperial imi-cameral 
diet of one hundred members chosen from the provincial 
parliaments and having deliberative powers. The vital 
question with this constitution, as indeed with all the em- 
peror's attempts, was : Will Hungary be satisfied ? 

The answer was soon evident. Himgary had passed 
beyond the time when she would be satisfied with her pre- 
revolutionary status : her statesmen, led by the patriot 
Deik, demanded the March Laws of 1848, which had been 
accepted by the former Emperor in the days of the revo- 

Francis Joseph and his councilors were not ready to 
accept these March Laws, inasmuch as the maintenance 
of the essential imity of the Empire was considered of 
greatest importance, so they made another attempt to 
conciliate Hungary. February 26, 1861, a new imperial 
constitution was promulgated, differing from the October 
Charter chiefiy in the creation of a Diet of two chambers 
having broad and fimdamental financial and legislative 
powers. The members of the Diet were to be chosen by 
the parliaments of. the provinces. The pre-revolutionary 
political rights insured to the provinces by the October 
Charter were not disturbed. The constitution of Februaiy 
26, 1861, was the surrender of autocracy : Would Hungary 
accept ? 

Excitement among the Hungarians was during these 
months at a fever heat. They realized the concessions the 
government had made, but they were inspired to hope for 
the further concessions which would give them what they 
demanded. They therefore refused to accept the constitu- 
tion, decided not to send members to the newly created Diet, 
and demanded again the restoration of the March Laws 
of 1848. When the new Diet met. May 1, 1861, the 
Emperor, Francis Joseph, opened it in person: no repre- 

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sentatives from Hungary or the Slav provinces were on 
the benches. 

Such was the situation at the time our history opens. 
The Austrian government had definitely taken the turn 
leading to liberal constitutional government, not because of 
any innate desire for liberalism, but because in view of the 
situation in Germany and abroad it desired to rally to its 
loyal support all classes in the empire. Its concessions had 
been rejected by its largest and most important province, 
Hungary, and the Hungarians, sullen and resentful, were 
kept from open rebellion only by the constant threat of 
force. The Austrian national finances reflected the result 
of the disorders : the national debt had more than doubled 
in the decade. The normal economic life had been inter- 
rupted. The power and influence of Austria had been 
weakened. No man outside of the inner circle of the Aus- 
trian government imderstood better the disaffection and 
unrest in Austria than Bismarck, who during the greater 
part of this period had been the Prussian representative in 
the German Diet at Frankfort. He made daring use of 
his knowledge when he became chancellor. 


The history of Italy dxiring the period just previous to 
1862 is the narrative of the successful diplomacy of one man, 
Count Camillo di Cavour, prime minister of Piedmont 
(or Sardinia) from 1852 until his death in 1861 (with the 
exception of a few months in 1859). Cavour was a devoted 
patriot, firmly attached to the principles of Italian unity 
and independence, and in his position proved himself a 
master of statecraft. 

After the decisive defeat of the Italian troops in the 
campaigns of 1848 and 1849, Charles Albert, King of 
Piedmont, abdicated in favor of his son, Victor Emmanuel. 
Italy seemed to fall back into the shameful conditions of 
the pre-revolutionary days: — Austria resinned her con- 

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trol over the Lombardo- Venetian territories; autocratic 
government was reestablished in the several Italian states 
of central and southern Italy; and the Pope returned to 
Rome. But Charles Albert's eflForts had not been wholly 
in vain. He had fought and lost, it was true, but he had 
focused the attention of patriotic Italians throughout the 
whole peninsula upon Piedmont, and had fixed Piedmont as 
the leader of those who desired Italian independence from 
Austria. Victor Emmanuel, receiving the throne from his 
father, gained the further gratitude of the Italian liberals 
by resisting Austrian inducements to abolish the Piedmontese 
constitution and to reestablish autocracy in his kingdom. 
Piedmont stood out as the one liberal state in the peninsula. 

It was this liberalism of the government which first 
gained the enthusiastic support of Cavour. As a young man 
he had studied the parliamentary institutions in England, 
and had become, nobleman though he was, a firm believer 
in liberalism. He was elected a member of the first parlia- 
ment in Piedmont, entered the Piedmontese ministry in 
1850, and became prime minister in 1852. 

As prime minister, Cavour inaugurated an ambitious and 
progressive internal policy at the same time that he was 
engaged in the international field. Piedmont had greatly 
increased her debt by the expenses of Charles Albert's 
campaigns. Her finances were disorganized. She seemed 
on the verge of bankruptcy. Two plans were possible: 
the obvious one of retrenchment ; or the audacious one of 
costly stimulation of industry and commerce until the people 
could without effort endiu-e the increased financial burdens. 
Cavour chose the second plan. He raised large sums by 
loans for public improvements; he built railroads, intro- 
duced more modern methods of agriculture, and entered into 
favorable commercial relations with neighboring states, 
thus encoiu-aging industry and trade. Piedmont forged 
ahead in material prosperity and soon all danger of national 
bankruptcy disappeared. 

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His most sensational successes, however, were gained in 
the field of international politics. He realized that Pied- 
mont alone could never hope to wrest the Italian territories 
from powerful Austria. He conceived it his duty, there- 
fore, to gain an ally who would be willing to aid Piedmont 
in war against Austria. His first step in this direction was 
to join in the Crimean war of 1854 and 1855 by the side of 
England and France. Severely criticized though he was 
for involving Piedmont in a war in which she had no ap- 
parent material interest, Cavour dispatched an Italian army 
of 15,000 to the Crimea. He gained his reward at the end 
of the war by being admitted to the Congress of Paris, 
and being permitted before the representatives of the Euro- 
pean powers to plead the cause of Italian independence 
from Austrian nde. The material advantage for Piedmont 
from his participation in the Crimean war and the Congress 
of Paris was nothing: the moral advantage was incalcu- 
lable — Piedmont had again placed herself before the world 
as the leader of those Italians who hoped to throw ofif the 
Austrian yoke, and had pleaded the cause of Italy publicly 
before the European powers. 

The ally from whom Cavour now hoped for material 
aid was Napoleon HI of France. Napoleon had at one time 
lived in Italy; had been a member of one of those secret 
societies working for Italian independence; and had been 
impressed favorably by Italian aid in the Crimean war 
and by Cavour's presence at the Congress of Paris. In 
1858 he invited Cavour to meet him at Plombi^es, a health 
resort in the Vosges mountains. In their secret meeting 
at the end of July, 1858, the two intriguers agreed verbally 
upon an alliance against Austria, France to come to Pied- 
mont's aid in order to expel the Austrians from the Lom- 
bardo- Venetian territories, and Napoleon to receive as 
his reward when the task was accomplished the provinces 
of Savoy and Nice. In December, 1858, these agreements 
were put in writing. 

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Cavour directed his diplomacy now to causing Austria 
to attack Piedmont. By constant irritation, and by a 
threatening concentration of troops on the Lombard border, 
he finally drew from Austria an ultimatum demanding 
demobilization. This was his opportunity. The presenta- 
tion of the ultimatum put the initiative upon Austria. 
When Austria crossed the Ticino river a week later for the 
invasion of Piedmont, Napoleon led his armies to Victor 
Emmanuel's assistance. 

The allied French and Piedmontese armies won consist- 
ently over the poorly led Austrians. In the great battles 
of Magenta (June 4, 1859) and Solferino (June 24, 1859), 
the allies succeeded in driving the Austrians back to the 
Quadrilateral. All northern Italy was freed: it remained 
only to force the Austrians from their defenses and Venice 
and the Trentino might be gained. Before this final step 
was taken, however, Napoleon HI, without consultation 
with his ally, offered an armistice, and soon after entered 
upon negotiations for peace. 

The disappointment of Victor Emmanuel and Cavour 
was intense. They had seemed on the threshold of com- 
plete attainment of their aims, and now without warning 
their ally refused to take the final steps for victory. Cavour, 
beside himself with anger, urged desperate measures; and 
when overruled by the king, resigned and went into retire- 
ment. Victor Emmanuel accepted the gains the allies had 
made, and looked forward to their completion ujider more 
favorable auspices. In the provisions of the treaty of 
peace, the Treaty of Zurich (November 10, 1859), Lombardy 
was ceded to Piedmont, but Venice remained under Aus- 
trian domination. Napoleon did not claim the cession of 
Savoy and Nice, inasmuch as he recognized that he had 
not carried out to the full his part of the compact. 

Events moved rapidly after this time. Piedmont's suc- 
cess, combined with her liberal constitution and her pre- 
vious championship of freedom from Austria, drew to her 

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as to a magnet the other Italian states. The people in 
central Italy, in Parma, Modena, and Tuscany, had over- 
thrown their autocratic governments during the war, and 
their leaders now demanded imion with Piedmont. Na- 
poleon in was unwilling to see this further enlargement 
of Piedmont, though he could not consistently use force to 
oppose it. Cavoiu-, who had again become prime minister 
in January, 1860, could not afford at this critical point to 
lose the friendship of his powerful ally, and yet the addition 
of the territory in central Italy was most desirable. After 
careful negotiations, Cavour bargained to cede to France 
the provinces of Savoy and Nice, and in return to gain 
Napoleon's consent to the imion of the states of central 
Italy with Piedmont. Plebiscites were held in these 
states in March, 1860, to assure the world of the over- 
whelming sentiment in favor of the union with Piedmont; 
Victor Emmanuel accepted the sovereignty; and the first 
parliament of the enlarged state met at Turin, April 2, 

Thus in the spring of 1860, Italy was divided into foxir 
main parts: Venice and the Trentino, under Austrian 
domination; Piedmont, a liberal constitutional kingdom 
extending across northern and down into central Italy; 
the Papal territories, including Rome, Umbria, and the 
Marches; and the kingdom of Naples, an autocracy 
under Francis 11, comprising all of the lower half of the 
peninsula, and Sicily. All of Italy was, of course, in 
a ferment as a result of the momentous changes of the 
preceding year. t 

In May, 1860, the next step in the unification of Italy 
was begun. Garibaldi, a soldier of fortune with a long 
picturesque career of intrigue and fighting against Austrian 
power, set sail from Genoa with a thousand volunteers to 
assist revolutionists in Sicily. He had no official recogni- 
tion from Victor Enmianuel, but imdoubtedly the Pied- 
montese government was aware of, and secretly approved, 

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the expedition. At the attack of Garibaldi, the kingdom 
of Naples collapsed. Sicily was conquered and held by 
Garibaldi in the name of Victor Emmanuel ; and the people 
of the mainland welcomed the Garibaldeans with open 
arms. In less than five months Garibaldi had conquered 
Naples. Emboldened by his successes, he started to move 
against Rome. 

At this point Cavour intervened. Napoleon m was 
interested in behalf of the French Catholics in the main- 
tenance of the Pope*s authority intact in Rome. Gari- 
baldi might, by an attack upon the Pope, endanger all the 
gains he had already made. Victor Emmanuel's army 
moved south through Umbria and the Marches, defeated 
the remnants of Francis II's army at Gaeta, and met Gari- 
baldi at Naples. Garibaldi surrendered his power wholly 
to the King. In October and November, the people of 
Naples, Umbria, and the Marches were invited to register 
their votes in a plebiscite on the question of whether they 
desired union with Piedmont in a united Italy. Over- 
whelming majorities voted in favor (Naples approximately 
1,700,000 Yes, 10,500 No; Umbria 97,000 Yes, 400 No; 
the Marches 130,000 Yes, 1000 No). On March 17, 
1861, the Kingdom of Italy was proclaimed, and Victor 
Emmanuel II became its first king. 

The events of these crowded years had created a united 
Italy of more than 22,000,000 inhabitants, worthy by its 
size to take its place among the great powers of Europe. 
Its national aspirations, however, had not been completely 
attained. Yenice and the Trentino were still under Aus- 
trian rule, and Rome, the ancient capital of Italy, was in 
the hands of the Pope. No patriotic Italian could be satis- 
fied with such gaps in complete unity. Italian policy in 
the new kingdom was guided by the desire to add these 
territories to Italy. 

A few months after the completion of the great events 
we have outlined above, the one man who had been pri- 

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manly responsible for them, and whose genius was acutely 
needed in the difficult work of political organization and 
economic reconstruction in the new kingdom, died. Cavour's 
death was in the prime of life, June 6, 1861, when he was 
but fifty-one years old. He had risen by sheer ability to a 
most commanding position in European politics: he was 
sorely missed in Italy in the years that followed. 


Czar Nicholas I of Russia died March S, 1855, in the midst 
of the reverses of the Russian armies in the Crimean war. 
His successor, Alexander H, then in his thirty-eighth year, 
assumed the reins of government when Russian fortunes 
were at their lowest ebb. The shameless corruption of 
high-bom officials had disgraced the government and had 
resulted in untold sufferings among the soldiers; the Rus- 
sian diplomacy, beginning the war with the expectation of 
easily gaining Constantinople, had so far failed that a great 
European coalition had formed against Russia, and Russia 
stood without an ally; and the Russian armies, which at 
first had advanced to the Danube, had been forced back, 
and the great fortified naval base at Sebastopol was under 
siege by the allies. From a popular war, the war had be- 
come unpopular. The blame for the scandal of official 
corruption was laid, as always, to the government. Public 
opinion among the masses of the people was aroused as it 
seldom had been before in this autocratic country. 

The fall of Sebastopol in early September, 1865, gave the 
allies the sense of victory, and offered an interim for peace 
negotiations. The Russian finances were exhausted, and 
the banks were refusing to accept the paper money offered 
by the government; the Turks were inciting revolt in dis- 
tant provinces; Poland showed signs that she was pre- 
paring to take advantage of Russia's difficulties to strike 
for freedom; and Finland was in danger of tearing loose 
to join again with Sweden. In this situation, Alexander 

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accepted Austrian offers of mediation. February 1, 1856» 
the preliminaries of peace were signed. From February 
25 to the end of March a European Congress sat in Paris 
considering the terms of the final treaty. And the Treaty 
of Paris was signed March 30, 1856. The astute diplo- 
macy of the Russian minister Gortchakoff had saved Russia 
from any serious or disgraceful losses. As a net result of 
the war she gave up the right of protection of Christians 
of her faith in the Turkish dominions, accepted the prin- 
ciple of the neutrality of the Black Sea, and bound herself 
together with Turkey to maintain no naval forces therein, 
and surrendered a little territory. 

The disgrace of the Crimean war was the signal for the 
inauguration of a policy of social and economic reform in 
Russia. The basis of this policy lay in the emancipation 
of the serfs. The war had revealed to Russian statesmen that 
so long as a majority of the Russian agricultural workers 
were in a condition of serfage, Russia could not hope to 
rival the material and economic progress upon which the 
wealth and success of the nations of western Europe were 
founded. Once the freedom of the press and of speech was 
allowed — as it was to an unusual degree shortly after the 
signing of the Treaty of Paris — expression of opinion from 
all parties in Russia was heard that the aboUtion of serfage 
would be the beginning of a new unity of sentiment and of 
a new industrial and economic progress in the country. 
All other reforms were dependent upon this basic reform. 
— the emancipation of the serfs. 

The serfs in Russia numbered at this period (1856) ap- 
proximately 47,000,000. Of these, 25,000,000 were held on 
lands owned by, or under the direct control of, the crown. 
The lot of these crown serfs was not hard. They enjoyed 
certain privileges not given to the serfs -of private proprie- 
tors — a right to a measure of local government, courts 
in which they were judged by judges elected by their own 
body, and a community organization having an elected 

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council. Except for restrictions upon their freedom of 
movement from place to place, upon their right to acquire 
property or to dispose of property, and upon their choice 
of occupation, these crown serfs were freemen already in 
all but name. The lot of the serfs belonging to individual 
proprietors was less favorable, differing, however, in ac- 
cordance with the character of the proprietor. Although 
protected by law from the extremes of tyranny — corporal 
punishment had to stop short of maiming or death; not 
more than three days a week could be exacted for labor 
on the proprietor's land; and no serf could be compelled 
to marry against his will — the serfs were in person and 
property alike wholly under the control of their masters. 
Aside from the evil moral and social effects of such a sys- 
tem, the economic results were exceedingly poor. Forced 
labor was inefficient and wasteful. Lack of the incentive 
provided by the personal ownership of property prevented 
the serfs from exerting themselves in the cultivation of 
the land or in any industry. Ignorance and superstition 

It was not difficult for the government to take the neces- 
sary steps to make freemen of the crown serfs. Inasmuch 
as they were under the control of the Czar himself, he held 
it within his power at any time to remove from them the 
remaining restrictions and to declare them freemen. Pur- 
suant to his policy, he emancipated these serfs by a series 
of imperial decrees beginning in July, 1858. 

The problem of providing for the emancipation of the 
22,000,000 serfs of private owners, however, was beset with 
difficulties. It was essential, in order that the serfs in their 
new freedom might be given the wherewithal to support 
themselves, that they be allotted land ; yet such land had 
to be taken from the proprietors. The adjustment of the 
relations between freedmen and proprietors, and of the prices 
to be paid for land allotments, called for the most careful 
negotiations. A conmiittee appointed at the end of 1856 

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to consider these questions was in session the greater part 
of three years without making substantial headway. In 
1859 the Czar intervened to hasten their decisions. And 
finally, February 19, 1861, the manifesto of emancipation 
was completed. 

The emancipation provided by this decree was immediate 
and complete. The former serfs became landed proprietors, 
a certain proportion of their former masters' land being 
distributed among them, and the remainder left to the 
proprietors. The peasants were required to pay the govern- 
ment for the land they received in installments extending 
over fifty years : the proprietors received in national bonds 
the value of the land which was diverted from them. The 
model of conmiunal government, as it had existed pre- 
viously in the crown lands, was used for the political organi- 
zation of the conmiunities of the newly freed serfs. To 
settle the many involved questions arising from the edict 
of emancipation, the oflBce of "Arbiter of the PeaQe" was 
created, and men of position and character appointed as 
such in districts all over Russia. 

Russia was in the midst of the readjustments accompany- 
ing the execution of the edict of emancipation at the time 
our history opens. Disorders prevailed in many parts of 
the empire. The peasants, far from feeling grateful for 
their new privileges, believed that the land should have 
been handed over to them without their being called upon 
to assume any financial burden. It was unjust, they thought, 
to have to purchase the very land on which their little 
huts stood, and the fields which they had so long been culti- 
vating for themselves. Only gradually, and sometimes 
by the use of force, could matters be settled. Great credit 
during this trying period is due to the patience and tact 
with which the appointed "Arbiters of the Peace" dealt 
with the situation, and to the sacrifices which the former 
proprietors showed themselves willing to make for the com- 
mon good. 

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The revolution of 1848 in France forced the abdication 
of Louis Phib'ppe and resulted in the establishment of a 
republic. The first President, Louis Napoleon, was elected 
December 10, 1848, and took the oath of office ten days 
later. Ample evidence exists that, from the beginning of 
his presidency, he intrigued for the downfall of the republic 
and the reestablishment of the old empire with himself at 
its head. Li 1851, after long disagreement with his parlia- 
ment, he and his agents carried through a coup (TStat by 
which he assumed the dictatorship and promulgated a new 
constitution. A year later a carefully organized plebiscite 
declared in favor of the restoration of the empire. Decem- 
ber 2, 1852, Louis Napoleon became Napoleon III, Emperor 
of France. 

This Napoleon who had undertaken to carry on the im- 
perial succession was the nephew of the great Napoleon 
and the head of the Napoleonic line. He had retained from 
his early manhood a supreme faith in his destiny and an 
imconquerable determination to govern France. In 1836 
he had gathered a few adventurers about him at Strasburg, 
raised the imperial eagle, and endeavored to stampede the 
troops of the garrison to his cause. His attempt ended in 
failure, and he himself was arrested and exiled. Four 
years later (1840), he landed at Boulogne in the eflfort 
to arouse the people, but was quickly caught, tried, and 
sentenced to imprisonment for life in the great fortress of 
Ham. Six years later he escaped from the fortress in dis- 
guise and fled to England. The overthrow of Louis Phi- 
lippe and the establishment of a republic gave him his 
opportunity to enter openly into political life in France. 
He was elected to the new assembly, and soon after posed 
as the candidate of the people for the presidency. The 
Napoleonic tradition gave him an importance not warranted 
by any ability he had shown up to that time. The masses 

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of France had forgotten the sufferings of the nation under 
the Napoleonic regime and remembered only its power and 
splendor. In the belief that this representative of the Na- 
poleonic line might unify France and restore the country to 
its former prestige in Europe, the people gave him their 
votes for President, and approved his elevation to the 
imperial dignity in 1852. 

Napoleon was at this time (1852) a man of forty-four, 
rather pale and phlegmatic in appearance, with a character 
deeply affected by the trials and disappointments of his 
past life. He had been perforce an intriguer to gain the 
throne: he continued to be an intriguer all his life. He 
could conciliate men by a cordiality and graciousness of 
manner, but he expected all his associates to subordinate 
their own interests to his own cause. He could — and did 
at times — adopt policies which could have been dictated 
only by reckless impulse : on the other hand, he could at 
other times follow with iron determination a policy he 
deemed wise in spite of the most formidable opposition. 
He was an enigma to the people of his own time, and has 
not emerged clearly even yet. Bismarck, who had abundant 
opportunity to know him, and whose judgment with regard 
to character was rarely at fault, said : 

"It is my impression that the Emperor Napoleon is a discreet 
and amiable man, but that he is not so clever as the world esteems 
hiip. The world places to his account everything that happens, 
and if it rains in eastern Asia at an unseasonable moment, chooses 
to attribute it to some malevolent machination of the Emperor. 
Here especially we have become accustomed to regard him as a 
kind of g^nie du mal who is for ever only meditating how to do 
mischief in the world. I believe he is happy when he is able to 
enjoy anything good at his ease ; his understanding is overrated 
at the expense of his heart ; he is at bottom good-natured, and has 
an unusual measure of gratitude for every service rendered him." 

The accession of Napoleon to absolute power in the re- 
stored French empire was, naturally, of the most vital 

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concern to the other great powers of Europe. In all the 
chaneellerieSy the name of Napoleon was associated with 
memories of wibounded ambition, of a career of military 
conquest, and of French territorial aggrandizement. In 
England, especially, the fears of a resumption of the policies 
of the first Napoleon led to a campaign of vituperation 
against Napoleon the Little, as he was dubbed, which lasted 
during his entire reign — even when England and France 
were allies in the Crimean War — and followed him to the 
grave. All his acts and declarations were scrutinized to 
discover the first intimation of offensive purpose. 

Napoleon's reign may be divided in general survey into 
two parts : the first, from its beginning in 1852 until the 
Italian War in 1859, a period of conspicuous success ; the 
second, from 1859 to the debacle in 1870, a period of gradual 
deterioration. In this chapter we shall indicate the features 
of its success and point out the turning point, thus bringing 
our outline of the situation down to the opening of our 

The organization of government effected by the new 
Emperor was admirably adapted to maintain the su- 
preme authority in his own hands. He was Commander-in- 
Chief of the armed forces, both military and naval ; he had 
the right to declare war and to make peace ; he had the right 
to conclude treaties of commerce or of alliance ; he had 
unlimited power of pardon ; he had the initiative in legis- 
lation as well as the power to promulgate the laws and to 
issue the ordinances necessary for their execution; he 
determined the apportionment of the budget among the 
administrative departments, and could contract loans ; he 
had absolute control over the appointment and dismissal 
of his ministers ; and he could convene, adjourn, or dissolve 
the l^slative bodies. The power of appointment of 
subordinate officials gave to his highly centralized govern- 
ment a firm hold on the political situation throughout the 
nation, for he selected the prefects in the departments and 

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the mayors and deputy mayors in the commmies. He 
achieved at a single stroke, under the above organization, 
as secure a hold on tl^e government as had Napoleon I at 
the height of his power. The legislative bodies — Council 
of State, Senate, and Chamber — sank to be mere agencies 
of Napoleon Ill's supreme will. 

The Emperor realized, however, that a government rest- 
ing on force alone was unstable. He undertook, therefore, 
from the beginning of his reign to carry through measures 
and projects which should satisfy the important classes in 
France. The Catholic party, headed by the clergy, had 
been on his side at his elevation to the throne : he showed 
it signal favors in the years following, as by concessions 
in the matter of education, by munificent grants to churches 
and charitable organizations, and by official representation 
at the church ceremonies. The sound business and financial 
interests of the country were conciliated by governmental 
encouragement of enterprise, extension of railroad lines, 
organization of the Postal and Telegraphic services, and a 
favorable attitude toward commercial and manufacturing 
activities. The masses of the people were to be satisfied 
by the assurance of "good times," plenty of work, and a 
fair wage. To bring about these conditions, the govern- 
ment inaugurated a policy of public improvements on a 
vast scale, giving employment to thousands and beautify- 
ing the cities and increasing the harbor facilities throughout 
France. Haussmann planned and built the broad boule- 
vards which are so conspicuous a feature of the center of 
Paris to-day. The huge docks at Marseilles were rapidly 
pushed to completion. The harbor of Havre was enlarged. 
Lyons and Lille were beautified. The Emperor himself 
established a luxurious and resplendent court, reputed the 
finest in Europe. In 1855 he opened an enormous interna- 
tional exposition in Paris, bringing to that capital a host of 
visitors and giving an impressive spectacle of the mechanical 
and scientific progress of the time. However one might 

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criticize the means by which Napoleon had gained the 
throne, no one could criticize the wisdom with which he had 
stimulated economic life, and no one could at this time doubt 
the strength of the support he had in the nation. 

The Emperor had promised his people peace when he 
had assumed the crown. Ultimately, the breaking of that 
promise was the cause of his downfall. The first war in 
which he engaged, however, the Crimean War of 1854 to 
1855, added to his prestige. His troops distinguished 
themselves beside their English and Piedmontese allies, and 
the Congress for the settlement of the terms of peace was 
held in Paris. The French people were proud of the valor 
of their armies, and their vanity was touched by the selec- 
tion of their capital as the meeting place of the Congress. 

The second war, however, the Italian War of 1859, al- 
though successful, brought down upon the government a 
storm of criticism, and created a strong opposition party 
in the country. Napoleon was sincerely interested in the 
cause of Italian liberty. As a young man, he had been a 
member of the Carbonari, one of the secret societies conspir- 
ing for Italian independence. He had been instfumental 
in securing the acceptance of Piedmont's aid in the Crimean 
War ;. and he had gained a hearing for Cavour in the Con- 
gress of Paris in 1856. He showed the incUnation after 
hearing* Cavour in this Congress to commit France to 
Piedmont's aid in expelling Austria from the Italian penin- 
sula. As soon as his inclination became known, the in- 
fluence of the Catholic church was exerted to restrain him. 
The clergy felt — with justification, as events proved — that 
any popular liberal movement centering around Piedmont 
would later affect the territories or position of the Pope. 
After attempting to allay the fears of the Catholics in France, 
Napoleon met Cavour in secret conference at Plombi&res 
and arranged the terms by which France would aid Pied- 
mont. Broadly stated, these were that France would assist 
in sweeping the Austrians from the entire peninsula and 

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that Piedmont in return would cede to France the prov- 
inces of Nice and Savoy. As soon as Cavonr was certain 
of Napoleon's assistance, he endeavored to bring about the 
war. HostiUties began in April of 1859. The French and 
Piedmontese troops met with complete success, but Na- 
poleon offered an armistice before the Austrians had been 
completely cleared out of Italy. In the peace which followed, 
Lombardy was added to Piedmont, but Venice was left 
under Austrian domination. Napoleon himself, realizing 
that he had not fulfilled his entire contract, did not press at 
the moment for the cession of Nice and Savoy. 

The motives for Napoleon's sudden measures for an armis- 
tice have never been satisfactorily explained. Whether 
he was appalled by the loss of life in the great battle of 
Solferino, or whether he doubted the possibility of driving 
the Austrians from their strong defensive positions in the 
Quadrilateral, or whether he did not desire the establish- 
ment of too strong a kingdom on his southeastern border, 
we do not know. His action, however, took away much 
of the glory of his military enterprise. He lost the gratitude 
of Victor Emmanuel, and he declined in prestige at home. 

In the events of the following year he showed an indecision 
which still further increased the opposition to his policy. 
Parma, Modena, and Tuscany were added to the already 
enlarged Piedmont, Naples was conquered, and two im- 
portant districts of the Papal territories — Umbria and the 
Marches — were admitted to the new kingdom of Italy. 
And while this new kingdom was forming. Napoleon took no 
effective steps to check it. Not even the acquisition of 
Nice and Savoy could compensate French statesmen for 
French impotence at a time when such important changes 
were taking place. And the Catholic adherents were 
enraged that the Emperor had permitted the spoUation of 
the Pope. Napoleon's reputation as a wise ruler and a 
skillful diplomat suffered its deathblow from his Italian 

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At the same time (1860), Napoleon alienated another im- 
portant class of his supporters by negotiating a commercial 
treaty with England whereby import duties were materially 
reduced. Although the treaty did not commit France to 
the policy of Free Trade, it was a definite step in that direc- 
tion. When the news of this treaty was divulged, the 
great manufacturing interests of the country took instant 
alarm. Meetings of protest were held and great indigna- 
tion expressed. The Emperor had lost irrevocably the sup- 
port of the manufacturers and protectionists throughout 

At this juncture. Napoleon turned to the Liberals for 
political aid. In decrees promulgated in November, 1860, 
he increased the powers of the Senate and Legislative As- 
sembly by permitting them to move and discuss freely each 
year an address in reply to the speech from the throne. 
At the same time he authorized the publication of full 
reports of parliamentary debates. These decrees were the 
first step in the liberalization of the empire — and in the 
undermining of the Emperor's power. The parliament could 
use the ''address in reply'* as an opportunity to criticize the 
Emperor's policies; and the country at large could read 
the eloquent appeals addressed to the legislative chambers. 
The first steps toward liberalism once taken, the Empergr 
found himself importuned insistently by the Liberals to 
grant greater concessions in the same direction. 

Such was the condition of affairs at the time our history 
opens. Napoleon had turned two of the most powerful 
bodies of his supporters, the Catholic interests and the 
manufacturing interests, into the ranks of the opposition. 
His personal popularity was waning ; his prestige had been 
shaken. He was treading the first steps in the path of the 
liberalism which was fatally undermining his government. 

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Having now outlined briefly the conditions in the neigh- 
boring states of Europe, we may return to the critical 
and confused situation in Prussia. There the newly ap- 
pointed chancellor was confronting a majority in the parlia- 
ment hostile to the policy he had promised at his accession 
to carry out. Successive elections in 1861 and 1862 had 
shown how strongly and consistently this "Progressive" 
majority was supported by the country at large. To com- 
bat it, Bismarck had his own genius and daring and the 
support of the Emperor : nothing more. 


In the conflict with his parliament, Bismarck went frankly 
and directly to the point immediately after he assumed 
office. In his first conference with the Budget conunittee 
of the lower chamber he made his position clear. He warned 
the committee not to exaggerate the powers of its chamber, 
for a budget was not decided by the lower chamber alone, 
but by joint action of the lower chamber, the upper cham- 
ber, and the crown. Then, after dwelling somewhat on 
the attitude of the parliament toward the constitution and 
on the new liberalism throughout the country, he sounded 
in a famous phrase what later came to be regarded as the 
keynote of all his policy: "Not by speeches and majority 
votes are the great questions of the time decided — that 
was the great blunder of 1848 and 1849 — but by blood and 


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BLSMARCK'S POLICIES, 1862-1864 61 

Bismarck's attitude produced a very bad impression. 
His words seemed reckless. He was considered a bully, 
a Junker of the type so unpleasantly familiar to Prussia in 
the absolutist days of Frederick William IV. His arrogant 
self-confidence before the committee, his cynicism and 
occasional sarcastic hits, offended his hearers. What was 
he, a new and untried minister whose lease of office might 
extend but a few days or at most a month, to warn a legis- 
lative committee not to exaggerate its powers ! And what 
right had he, an open and avowed reactionary, to criticize 
the events of 1848 and 1849 whereby the liberals had gained 
from the reluctant King Frederick William IV their prized 
constitution! And above all, what did these references 
to blood and iron mean ? That arms were to be used and 
blood shed ? 

The dismay which had been aroused in the parliament 
oomjnunicated itself to the King, who at the moment was 
in Baden-Baden. Bismarck's position was indeed precari- 
ous. His enemies were busy intriguing to undermine his 
influence with the King, and the King was, in the situation, 
absolutely his only support. We have from Bismarck's 
own pen a graphic account of how he retained the King's 
support after the convulsion caused by the "blood and 
iron*' speech: 

"In the beginning of October I went as far as Jiiterbogk to meet 
the King, who had been at Baden-Baden for September 80, his 
wife's birthday, and waited for him in the still unfinished rail- 
way station, filled with third-class travellers and workmen, seated 
in the dark on an overturned wheelbarrow. My object in taking 
this opportunity for an interview was to set his Majesty at rest 
about a speech made by me in the Budget Commission on Sep- 
tember 30, which had aroused some excitement, and which, though 
not taken down in shorthand, had still been reproduced with 
tolerable accuracy in the newspapers. . . . 

" I had some difficulty in discovering from the curt answers of 
the officials the carriage in the ordinary train, in which the King 
was seated by himself in an ordinary first-class carriage. The 

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after-eflFect of his association with his wife was an obvious depres- 
sion, and when I begged for permission to narrate the events which 
had occurred during his absence, he interrupted me with the 
words: *I can perfectly well see where all this will end. Over 
there, in front of the O^ra House, under my windows, they will 
cut off your head, and mine a little while afterwards.* 

" I guessed, and it was afterwards confirmed by witnesses, that 
during his week's stay at Baden his mind had been worked upon 
with variations on the theme of Polignac, Strafford, and Louis 
XVI. When he was silent, I answered with the short remark, 
*Et aprh. Sire,* ^Aprhs^ indeed; we shall be dead,' answered 
the King. *Yes,' I continued, 'then we shall be dead; but we 
must all die sooner or later, and can we perish more honourably ? 
I, fighting for my King's cause, and yoiu* Majesty sealing with 
your own blood your rights as King by the grace of (Jod ; whether 
on the scaffold or the battlefield, makes no difference to the glory 
of sacrificing life and limb for the rights assigned to you by the 
grace of God. Your Majesty must not think of Louis XVI; 
he lived and died in a condition of mental weakness, and does 
not present a heroic figure in history. Charles I, on the other 
hand, will always remain a noble historical character, for after 
drawing his sword for his rights and losing the battle, he did not 
hesitate to confirm his royal intent with his blood. Your Majesty 
is bound to fight, you cannot capitulate ; you must, even at the 
risk of bodily danger, go forth to meet any attempt at coercion.* 

" As I continued to speak in this sense, the King grew more and 
more animated, and began to assume the part of an officer fighting 
for kingdom and fatherland. In presence of external and per- 
sonal danger he possessed a rare and absolutely natural fearless- 
ness, whether on the field of battle or in the face of attempts on 
his life; his attitude in any external danger was elevating and 
inspiring. The ideal type of the Prussian officer who goes to meet 
certain death in the service with the simple words, 'At your orders,' 
but who, if he has to act on his own responsibility, dreads the criti- 
cism of his superior officer or of the world more than death, even 
to the extent of allowing his energy and correct judgment to be 
impaired by the fear of blame and reproof — this tyi)e was de- 
veloped in him to the highest degree. Hitherto, on his journey, 
he had only asked himself whether, under the superior criticism 
of his wife and public opinion in Prussia, he would be able to keep 
steadfast on the road on which he was entering with me. The ' 
influence of our conversation in the dark railway compartment 

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counteracted this su£BcientIy to mfike him regard the part which 
the situation forced upon him more from the standpoint of the 
officer. He felt as though he had been touched in his military 
honour, and was in the position of an officer who has orders to 
hold a certain position to the death, no matter whether he perishes 
in the task or not. This s€ t him on a course of thought which was 
quite familiar to him ; and in a few minutes he was restored to 
the confidence which he had lost at Baden, and even recovered 
his cheerfulness. To give up his life for King and fatherland was 
the duty of an officer ; still more that of a King, as the first officer 
in the land. As soon as he regarded his position from the point 
of view of military honour, it had no more terror for him than the 
command to defend what might prove a desperate position would 
have for any ordinary Prussian officer. This raised him above 
the anxiety about the criticism which public opinion, history, and 
his wife might pass on his political tactics. He fully entered into 
the part of the first officer in the Prussian monarchy, for whom 
death in the service would be an honourable conclusion to the task 
assigned him. The correctness of my judgment was confirmed 
by the fact that the King, whom I had found at JUterbogk weary, 
depressed, and discouraged, had, even before we arrived at Berlin, 
developed a cheerful, I might almost say joyous and combative 
disposition, which was plainly evident to the ministers and officials 
who received him on his arrival." 

The (x>Dimittee of parliament stood by its convictions 
and recommended to its chamber a resolution requiring 
the government to introduce the budget for 1863, and de- 
claring that expenditure of funds definitely refused by the 
chamber was unconstitutional. The house adopted its 
committee's report- The budget was passed without pro- 
vision for the army reorganization and increase, and, when 
presented to the upper chamber, was amended to conform 
to Bismarck's wishes and returned to the lower chamber. 
This action suited Bismarck well, for the responsibility for 
conflict was now to a certain extent shared by him with 
the upper house. There existed a legislative deadlock, 
the lower house refusing to incorporate into the budget 
the money for army reorganization and increase, the upper 
house refusing to pass a budget without such provisions* 

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Each house persisted in its« attitude. In the midst of the 
struggle the parliament was prorogued and the session of 

1862 closed. 

In this condition of affairs Bismarck took advantage 
of the failure of the constitution to make a definite state- 
ment of what should be done in case of legislative deadlock. 
No budget at all had been passed. The lower chamber 
had acted within its rights under the constitution in amend- 
ing the government's budget, the upper house had likewise 
acted within its rights in rejecting the budget as amended 
by the lower house ; yet the result was that after each house 
had acted within its constitutional rights, no budget had 
passed, no measure for paying the legitimate expenses of 
the government for 1863 had become law when the year 

1863 began. The government, however, could not cease 
to function. It could not be expected to discharge even 
that army which it had, to dismiss its ambassadors, to shut 
up and vacate government oflSces. Bismarck therefore 
interpreted the lack of definite constitutional provision 
against parliamentary deadlock as allowing him to continue 
for the year the financial provisions of the preceding year. 
This interpretation suited his purpose admirably, for in 
the preceding year (1862) the parUament had grudgingly 
provided for the increased army. By his interpretation, 
therefore, he gained his end exactly as though definite finan- 
cial provision had been made for the governmental policies. 

Bismarck continued thus to interpret the constitution 
for the benefit of the government so long as the period of 
conflict continued. When parUament met at the beginning 
of 1863, the lower house moved and carried an address 
to the sovereign accusing the ministers of having violated 
the constitution and demanding their dismissal. The 
King refused to receive the committee appointed to deliver 
the address, and criticized the stubbornness and presump- 
tion of the chamber. As the session continued, von Bis- 
marck and von Roon in their tilts with the chamber became 

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BISMARCK'S POLICIES, 1862-1864 66 

so-oflfensive that the President attempted to, check them, 
whereat they refused to attend the sessions altogether until 
they should be allowed free speech. Again the chamber 
appealed to the King for the dismissal of his ministers, and 
again the King refused and strongly criticized the attitude of 
the assembly. At the end of May the parUament was 
again prorogued, and a few days later an edict was pro- 
mulgated for the suppression of freedom of the press. 
The conditions as thus briefly outlined continued with 
increased bitterness of feeling until after the Austro- 
Prussian war. 

In a country thoroughly accustomed to parliamentary 
government, or inore thoroughly accustomed to the privileges 
and rights conferred by a constitution, such arbitrary ac- 
tions would have resulted in revolution. In Prussia, how- 
ever, the people had as yet scarcely realized the meaning 
and value of their new constitution. Although it had 
been in force for more than a dozen years, it had, as we 
have stated, been so "interpreted" during most of those 
years by Frederick William IV and his advisers that its 
provisions had been almost nullified. The aggressive de- 
termination of the government to carry through its policy 
was in line with the nature of all government in Prussia 
up to the accession of William I, and, though protested 
vigorously by liberals in parliament, was accepted by the 
country at large without sign of actual rebellion. The 
people continued to pay their taxes to the government, 
thus furnishing it with the necessary revenue to maintain 
its policy. Undoubtedly economic prosperity favored Bis- 
marck. During these years of political conflict and bitter 
animosity between government and parliament, the country 
grew rapidly in material wealth. The government's taxes 
were easily met, and popular discontent was difficult to 
arouse when the people were able to enjoy a higher standard 
of living than they had known for a generation past. Thus, 
aided by conditions within Prussia — the habit of obedience 

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to authority iligrained through long custom in the people, 
and unusual economic prosperity — Bismarck was able 
to keep the pledge that he made to the 'King when he took 
office^ namely, that he would carry through the reorganiza- 
tion of the army even in opposition to the majority in parlia- 
ment and its resolution. 


Before he accepted the post of head of the ministry, 
Bismarck*s unerring judgment had told him that the final 
justification for his high-handed action in domestic politics 
would lie with the success or failure of his foreign policy. 
At the same time that he accepted the leadership in the 
ministry, he took the post of minister of foreign affairs in 
order that he himself might handle the many difficult prob- 
lems involved in international diplomacy. In this field 
he was to prove himself supreme. All his experience at 
Frankfort, in Russia, an4 France, and in the many delicate 
missions he had been called upon to undertake in the years 
following 1851, and all the knowledge he had gained of the 
characters of the leading contemporary statesmen, were 
called into play during the next few years. As we look back 
from this distance we can see how he towered above the 
men of his time. The statesmen in England, Prance, 
Austria, and Russia failed entirely to fathom his designs 
or to cope with his intrigues. In international diplomacy 
Bismarck was a genius moving among men of little minds. 

i. Bismarck and Russia 

Bismarck had himself been in Russia at the time of the 
great changes accompanying the emancipation of the serfs. 
He knew the Czar Alexander and was well aware of his 
desire for reform. He realized, further, how completely 
Austria had alienated Russia by her attitude during the 
Crimean War. He sought, therefore, for an opportunity 

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BISMARCK'S POLICIES, ie>^«r-j864 97 

to render to Russia some signal service which would bind 
this powerful state to Prussia by ties of gratitude. His 
chance came with the FoUsh rebeUion of 1863, which in 
turn arose out of the false hopes excited by Alexander's 

Once the^ Russian Czar had entered upon the path of 
reform, he found new demands being constantly made 
upon him. Even in the midst of the turmoil of readjust- 
ments due to the emancipation of the serfs, the Uberals in 
the empire pressed for radical measures of further reforqi* 
The reorganization of the army and navy, shown to be neces- 
sary by the experiences of the Crimean War, was begun 
in 1862 ; a Commission set at work in the same year upon a 
thorough reconstruction of. the judiciary and legal proce* 
dure; another commission struggled with the problem of 
creating representative political bodies for local govern- 
ment; and the Czar's ministers were adopting various 
measures to stimulate the growth of commerce and indus* 
try in all parts of the country. 

The benevolent reforms of Alexander had been extended 
to Poland, but, instead of placating the Poles, had resulted 
in inciting them to impossible demands and ambitions. 
In March of 1861 the Czar by an imperial decree endeavored 
to conciliate Poland by granting it a separate Ministry 
of Instruction a^d Public Worship, and by establishing in 
alkthe districts and provinces elective boards with author- 
ity to present a statement of the local wishes and necessities 
to a Council of State' at Warsaw, the capital. A year later 
(1862), still further concessions were granted, one being the 
reopening of the University of Warsaw which had been closed 
in 1832, and another the adoption of Polish as the official 
language. That summer Alexander appointed his brother 
Viceroy at Warsaw, and replaced by Poles all the Russian 
governors of PoUsh provinces. But the Poles wanted, not 
reforms, but independence, with thw ancient territorial 
boundaries. The Polish magnates, the nobility, were 

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wealthy and powerful, and believed tHat they faced an 
opportunity to reestablish Poland in its ancient grandeur. 
Early in 1863, a revolution broke out. 

All Europe sympathized with the Poles. The governments 
of Great Britain, France, and Austria united in presenting 
proposals for Polish autonomy and in remonstrating against 
the severity of the measures being prepared for the suppres- 
sion of the rebellion. Popular feeling in Great Britain, 
Prance, and Austria supported the governmfents. The glories 
of ancient Poland were rehearsed, the bitter injustice of the 
eighteenth century partitions of Poland was recalled, the long 
struggle of the Poles for liberty and the feats of individual 
Poles in aiding other peoples to gain their freedom were 
emphasized. Western Europe was inspired with a sincere 
enthusiasm for the Polish cause. And even in Prussia 
and throughout Germany, popular sentiment was united 
in favor of the Poles. The liberal party, true to its prin- 
ciples, looked upon the Poles as fighting the fight of progress 
against reaction, of liberalism against autocracy. 

Bismarck, however, in politics and diplomacy was not 
to be swayed by emotion, but by expediency. He did not 
ask whether the Polish rebellion were just, but whether its 
success would be a good or a bad thing for Prussia. In* 
this question as in all, he decided and acted with an eye 
to what he conceived to be Prussian interests. And in his 
opinion, the success of the Polish rebellion would h^e 
weakened Prussia, for, in the first place, the Polish nobles 
would seek to incorporate in the regenerated Poland the prov- 
inces which in the eighteenth century partitions had fallen 
to Prussia's share, and in the second place, the success of 
a liberal rebellion in Poland would encourage the forces of 
liberal rebellion in Prussia. He had been disgusted with 
the German sympathy with the Poles in 1848; and now, 
in 1863, he despised what he believed to be the hasty and 
ill-considered sympathy of the mass of people for the revo- 

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BISMARCK'S POLICIES. 1862-1864 69 

Believing as he did, Bismarck had two courses open to 
him: to remain passive, or to aid Russia actively, The 
Prussian people wished and expected him to join England, 
France, and Austria in their joint representations and re- 
monstrances, so that even passive neutrality would have 
disappointed them. Their bitter' anger can be imagined 
when it became known that the King (of course by advice 
of Bismarck) had written an autograph letter to the Czar 
proposing that the two governments should take steps in 
mutual accord to cope with the common danger. A con- 
vention was agreed upon whereby the rebels might be pur- 
sued across the border by either government. Two Prus- 
sian army corps were mobilized and stationed along the 
Polish frontier. 

The results of Bismarck's poKcy, so far as the success of 
the Polish rebellion was concerned, were immediate and 
decisive. Aided»by the cordon of troops on the Prussian 
side, the Russians had, by the Spring of 1864, pitilessly 
exterminated the rebels. In the readjustment of political 
relations, Poland lost all of the peculiar rights she had pre- 
viously possessed, and was reduced to a mere province of 
Russia. The peasants were freed and made proprietors 
of the land they occupied. The Russian government under- 
took a campaign to Russianize Poland, to suppress the 
Polish language, religion, and customs in favor of the Rus- 

The results, so far as internal affairs in Prussia were con- 
cerned, were to increase the hatred of the liberals for Bis- 
marck. On the floor of the lower chamber the liberal lead- 
ers in carefully prepared attacks assailed the government's 
position. With a freedom of speech not exceeded in the 
most democratic state they protested that Bismarck's 
action had isolated Prussia among the civilized states of 
Europe and had endangered her very existence. 

The results, so far as external political relations were 
concerned, were at first dangerous, and later, as Bismarck 

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had foreseen, very favorable for Prussia. Bismarck's 
act aroused the most intense feeling among the nations 
which had protested to the Czar, There was actual, danger 
that they would unite and wage war on Prussia: indeed, 
Napoleon III did propose ^hat Great Britain, France, and 
Austria should in identical notes remonstrate with and 
threaten Prussia, Great Britain, however, holding fast 
to her previous policy of non-interference, refused to con- 
sent to this joint action. France and Austria alone dared 
not attack united Russia and Prussia. In the meanwhile, 
Prussia had gained the warm gratitude and friendship of 
Russia. Bismarck by his act had assured Russian suprem- 
acy in Polan"d ; he had foiled active intervention by Great 
Britain, France, and Austria; he had been willing to risk 
war in support of the Russian Czar's authority. The 
impulsive gratitude of the Czar and of the Russian people, 
and their hatred of Austria, assured Bismarck that in Prus- 
sia's inevitable struggle with Austria he could count upon 
Russian friendly neutrality. Prussia was no longer polit* 
ically isolated. 

ii. Bismarck and Austria 

Both the domestic policy and the Russian policy were, 
however, subordinate to the policy of Prussia toward Aus- * 
tria. Bismarck believed that he was guiding Prussia through 
trials that meant life or death for her. The supreme one 
of these trials would be the struggle with Austria for suprem- 
acy in German affairs. The perspective through which 
we now see events of that period shows that Bismarck was 
right. The great states of Europe had latent ambitions 
which, if fulfilled, would have meant the partial dismem- 
berment of Prussia and her definite relegation to the place 
of a second-rate power. For example, France desired the 
territory to the left of the Rhine for the acquirement of 
what she believed to be her "natural boundaries"; the 
King of Saxony still hoped for the restoration of the Saxon 

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BISMARCK'S POUCIES, ia««-l864 71 

boundaries of 1814 ; and Austria had never ceased to lament 
the loss of Silesia, wrested from her by Frederick the Great, 
Bismarck had a clearer conception of these perils than 
those legislators who refused to appropriate funds for the 
increase and reorganiaation of the army, that sole safeguard 
against foreign aggression, Furthennore,.Bismarck believed 
that he saw in the success against Austria the means for 
elevating Prussia above the worst of these perils. His- 
tory now acknowledges the sincere patriotism which actu-» 
ated him, and the Prussian nation pays him its homa|;e as 
its one wise man in a crucial period. 

Austria was at the moment in the throes of the severe 
internal crisis caused by Hungarian disaffection. The Hun- 
garian Diet, led by the patriot De&k, resolutely refused to 
accept the constitution promulgated by Francis Joseph 
in 1861, denied the legality of laws not approved by itself, 
and sent no delegates to the newly created Imperial Council 
(Reichsrath). Finally the Emperor, resorting again to 
force, estabUshed military rule throughout all of Hungary, 
though he was careful to declare that such military rule was 
to last only until the constitution could be put into opera- 
tion. The Imperial Council, which was practically a parlia- 
ment of the whole empite, met in May of 1861 and continued 
in session until December of 1862, but of course without the 
Hungarian delegates. 

The Imperial Council (Reichsrath) in the years following 
failed dismally to solve the problems underlying the dis- 
content in the empire. The persistent opposition of Hun- 
gary, SLud the withdrawal of the Czech delegates of Bohemia, 
after finding themselves insulted, oppressed, and without 
hope of procuring the revision of their own unjust consti- 
tutional laws, practically nullified all of the Reiehsrath's 
work. The progress of the nation toward insolvency con- 
tinued with alarming deficits of about fifty million florins 
a year. The members of the Reichsrath themselves recog- 
mtibd the failure of the government and were from 1864 

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onwards, opposed to the imperial cabinet. The last session 
ended in July, 1865. 

Francis Joseph himself was at last convinced of the failure 
of the system established by his "Diploma" of October, 
1860, and was ready to welcome any practicable suggestions 
for information. De&k, who, so long as the Vienna govern- 
ment had refused to be conciliatory, had inspired the obsti- 
nate opposition of the Hungarian patriots, now in 1865 
formulated in two declarations a program of constitutional 
changes which would satisfy Himgary. The Emperor, 
Francis Joseph, received these declarations with unfeigned 
satisfaction, especially De&k's statement: "We are always 
prepared to take any legal measures to modify our laws so 
as to secure the safety and solidarity of the monarchy." 
In^ September of 1865 Francis Joseph suspended the "Febru- 
ary Patent," thus repudiating the whole scheme. The 
Magyar leaders in Hungary, the Czech leaders in Bohemia, 
and the Slavs and Poles in their respective provinces joy- 
fully formulated their demands and presented them to the 
Emperor. And just at this critical moment, the war-clouds 
lowered and broke. 

, Yet at this period the internal conflict was by no means 
the only serious problem confronting Austria. Her posi- 
tion in the German Confederation was, in the ideals of her 
Emperor and his ministers, one of her chief interests. Fran- 
cis Joseph's emphasis upon Austrian primacy among the 
German states can be better understood when it is realized 
that he was the inheritor of a tradition extending back to 
the first Hapsburg Holy Roman Emperor, Rudolph, who 
was elected in 1873. Thus Austria and the Austrian Em- 
peror, head of the Hapsburg House, had been the leader in 
German affairs for six centuries. Even though after the 
middle of the sixteenth century the Holy Roman Empire 
had but a shadow of its former prestige, and even though in 
1806 it oflScially ceased to exist, yet in German affairs the 
Hapsburg House retained the prestige of six hundred years 

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of leadership. No monarch m Europe fell heir to a prouder 

It was in her attempt to maintain her position in the 
German Confederation that Austria's ambitions came into 
conflict with Bismarck's conception of Prussia's rights. 
In Austrian eyes, Prussia was an upstart nation : in Bis- 
marck's opinion, Austria was bent upon humiliating Prussia, 
and relegating her to second place, an indignity to which 
no country of Prussia's wealth and power should submit. 
Prussia did not have the long tradition of leadership in the 
Holy Roman Empire behind her, it was true, but the his- 
tory of the House of Brandenburg had been honorable 
and successful. Bismarck counted present strength more 
than past glory. Absolutely unemotional in diplomacy 
and statecraft, and unscrupulous in method, he was not 
overawed by Austrian traditions or delicate about the 
means by which he planned to overthrow Austrian power. 

Bismarck's first check to Austrian policies in the German 
Confederation was delivered a few months after he accepted 
the post at the head of the ministry. In July of 186S Francis 
Joseph attempted to settle decisively the German question. 
He invited all the German princes to a meeting at Frankfort, 
whereat he expected to gain their approval of a "reform" 
in the Confederation which would give the central authority 
permanently to Austria and her friends. Francis Joseph 
in person tried to persuade William I to attend this confer- 
ence, but Bismarck, believing that a conference under 
Austrian auspices would increase Austrian prestige among 
the German states, used every eflFort, even to a threat of 
resignation, to induce his royal master to refuse. Bis- 
marck has left us an account of the diflSculty he had in carry- 
ing his point : 

"It was not an easy task to decide the King to stay away from 
Frankfort. I exerted myself tot that purpose during our drive 
from Wildbad to Baden, when, on account of the servants on the 
box, we discussed the German question in the small open carriage 

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in French. By the time we reached Baden I thought I had oon« 
vinced my master. But there we found the King of Saxony, who 
was commissioned by all the princes to renew the invitation to 
Frankfort (August 19). My master did hot iSnd it easy to resist 
that move. He repeated over and over again : * Thirty reigning 
princes and a King to take their messages !' Moreover he loved 
and honored the King of Saxony, who of all the princes had per* 
sonally most vocation for such a mission. Not until midnight 
did I succeed in obtaining the King's signature to a refusal to the 
King of Saxony. When I left my master, both he and I were ill 
and exhausted by the nervous tension of the situation." 

Bismarck's success in keeping the King of Prussia from the 
Frankfort convention nullified all efforts of the Austrian 
Emperor to accomplish the results he desired, or indeed, 
any results at all. The smaller states knew too well that 
any decision by a convention which did not include Prussian 
representatives would be subject to protest ; and a protest 
by a state of the size and strength of Prussia meant a threat 
of war. Above all things the smaller states desired to 
prevent war, whose issue would probably mean their own 
extinction within the boundaries of the successful belligerent. 
Thus Francis Joseph's plans came to naught because Bis- 
marck succeeded in persuading William I not to join the 
other princes at Frankfort. 

iii. The Schiesyrig-HoUtein Issue 

Bismarck made his attitude toward Austria sufficiently 
clear in the Frankfort convention matter, but the next issue 
which rose between the two nations called for all of his 
adroitness and diplomatic skill. His methods are open to 
the charges of double dealing and unscrupulous perversion 
of motives, but in passing judgment we must remember 
two material facts : 1, that he was fencing with experts 
in diplomatic intrigue, men who for an. apparent advantage ' 
would stoop to any means; and 2, that he was sincerely 
and single-mindedly serving the interests of Prussia as he 
conceived them. 

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BISMARCK'S K)LICIES, 186«-18e4 76 

The issue arose concerning the disposition of the two 
ducl^es of Schleswig and Holstein, located at the base of 
the Danish peninsula. At this period (1863) Holstein had 
over 500,000 inhabitants, practically all Germans. Schles- 
wig, the more northern duchy adjoining Denmark, had 
approximately 400,000 inhabitants, of whom the majority, 
something over^ 250,000, were Germans. Politically the 
two duchies were united with Denmark, but the union wa« 
a personal union due to the fact that the King of Denmark 
was also Duke of Schleswig and Holstein. The duchies 
were* not incorporated into the Danish kingdom. Hol- 
stein was a member of the German Confederation, giving 
to its Duke (the King of Denmark) a representation in the 
German Diet. Schleswig was unattached, 

The issue was forced over the position of Schleswig. 
For a full generation this question had been an acute issue 
in European international politics. In a conference at 
London in 1852 the diplomats had attempted to settle it 
by agreement upon a London Protocol providing that the 
same individual might be King of Denmark and the Duke 
of Schleswig, but further providing that the duchy should 
not be incorporated into the Danish kingdom. Under the 
provisions of this Protocol the duchy had existed, with 
more or less friction between the German and Danish ele- 
ments in its population, until Denmark itself precipitated 
a crisis in 1863. The Danish parliament then adopted, 
and the King proclaimed, a new constitution incorporating 
Schleswig into Denmark, As it chanced, the Danish King, 
Frederick VII, died within a few days after the proclama- 
tion of the new constitution; but the situation was not 
changed, for his successor. Christian IX, confirmed his 
action three days after accession to the throne. 

At once popular feeling throughout Germany was aroused. 
Sympathy was wholly with the German majority in the 
Duchy who desired Schleswig admitted into the German 
Confederation as a new member. The act of Denmark 

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was clearly a breach of the London Protocol. The Diet 
of the Confederation protested vigorously and, after a short 
delay, authorized the sending of an army into the duchies 
to prevent the consummation of Denmark's plans. All 
Germany supported this move. 

At this point Bismarck's manipulation of the situation 
began. He had declared in the very year in which he 
became chancellor that the Danish question could be settled 
only by war. He had no desire to see a new state in the 
German Confederation, especially a state which might lean 
toward the support of Austria's prestige. He had no» sym- 
pathy with the German sentiment which anticipated the 
existeny of a new German state just because it added one 
more state to the confederation. He did not care to consider 
the rights and wrongs of the rival claimants to the dukedom 
after the death of the Danish King (1863). He thought 
he saw a chance so to manage the question as to incorporate 
ultimately the two duchies into Prussia. 

He proceeded cautiously at first. He declined to assent 
to the Diet's proposal to sen4 an army of the confederation 
into the duchy on the ground that the cause of the trouble 
was primarily a breach of the Protocol of 1852 and did not 
concern the confederation. He then entered into negotia- 
tions with the Austrian government, representing that the 
movement for the independence of Schleswig and Holstein 
and their admission into the German confederation was the 
result of radical and revolutionary propaganda, and that the 
two governments should act in concert to prevent the settle- 
ment of the question by such doubtful means. The wide- 
spread agitation and the inflammatory addresses throughout 
Germany gave some color to his representations. By 
thus working on Austrian fears of radicalism, he persuaded 
her to agree to join Prussia in military action against Den- 
mark on the avowed ground that it was the duty of Austria 
and Prussia, as signatories of the Protocol of 1852, to enforce 
the provisions of that document upon Denmark. • This 

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BISMARCK'S POLICIES, 1862-1864 77 

formal agreement between these two powers, signed on 
January 16; 1864, provided for : (1) a demand upon Den- 
mark for the withdrawal of the November Constitution 
within-^iS hours; (2) independent joint action by Prussia 
and Austria if the Confederate Diet refused to join pro- 
posed measures; (S) the preparation of the necessary 
military forces ; (4) the suppression of possible hostile dem- 
onstrations in case of the occupation of Schleswig; (5) 
the acceptance of a conference of powers only after the 
withdrawal of the November Constitution ; and (6) further 
consultation in case of interference by either power. While 
this agreement between Austria and Prussia was under 
consideration, the -Confederate Diet also discussed the ques- 
tions involved and protested against the measures proposed. 
Whereupon the lesser states were informed that Austria 
and Prussia would not be bound by the decisions of the 
Diet, but would proceed to act as two great powers. 
Bismarck thereupon dispatched to Denmark, on the six- 
teenth of January, the very day the agreement was signed, 
the joint Austro-Prussian ultimatum demanding the imme- 
diate rei)eal of the constitution and giving the impossibly 
short time of forty-eight hours for compliance. The triumph 
of Bismarck's diplomacy in winning over Austria to a policy 
of joint action may be better appreciated when it is. remem- 
bered that but a few months before Prussia* had ruined 
Austria's plans for a reform of the confederation by refus- 
ing to join the Congress of the Princes at Frankfort. 

Bisnpiarck's purpose was not at the moment clearly under- 
stood in Prussia or in Germany, and of course not in Austria. 
Bismarck afterwards said: "From the very beginning I 
kept annexation before my eyes, without losing sight of the 
other gradations." At the moment, however, Austria, 
the people of Prussia, and Germany believed that the im- 
pending Danish war was to be fought in defense of the 
London Protocol of 1862, and they looked forward at the 
conclusion of the war to the admission of Schleswig to the 

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German Confederation. .Popular sentiment favored tfaia 
^ course. Even such a close friend of Bismarck as von Roon, 
the minister of war, favored it. Above all, the TCipg him-* 
self, to whom Bismarc^ gradually unfolded his real ambi- 
tions, favored this course. Bismarck stood alone in Prussia 
and in Germany, His most diflScult task was to persuade 
the King tX) support his policy. "Without having investi- 
gated the complicated legal questions of the succession," 
wrote Bismarck in later years with respect to the King's 
attitude, "he stuck to his motto : *I have no right to Hol- 
stein.' " Bismarck resorted, as he had previously done in 
the matter of the Frankfort convention, to a threat of resig- 
nation before he could win over the reluctant King to his 

In Denmark, the ultimatum could not be accepted. Even 
had the new King of Denmark been disposed to recede 
from his position and withdraw the constitution, he had 
to have the consent of his parliament ; and the time given 
for answer, two days, was insufficient for the necessary pro- 
cedure. The King felt, however, that he had his people 
united in his support and more than reasonable expectation 
of foreign intervention in his favor, so he adopted a firm 
attitude. On January 31, 1864, in preparation for the 
advance into Schleswig, Prussia and Austria announced that 
the integrity of Denmark would be respected,* and that they 
were willing to take part in a European conference; but 
that if Denmark opened hostilities, all treaty stipulations 
were annulled and foreign interference would make .the fate 
of Denmark all the more severe. 

iv. The Danish War 

When King William of Prussia gave £he word which started 
the combined armies of Austria and Prussia, he set in mo- 
tion for the first time that splendid military machine for 
which Bismarck had contended so vigorously in the Landtag. 
Three corps moved forward ; the two Prussian corps under 

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BISMARCK'S POLICIES, 186«-1864 79 

Prince Frederick Charles, and General v(5n der Mtilbe, and 
the Austrian corps under Field Marshal von Gablenz. 
Prom Great Britain came vague threats and a demand for 
a conference of the signers of the London Protocol from Lord 
Palmerston; from nearer home came protests from the 
smaller German states who saw danger for themselves in 
these aggressive moves of Prussia. Hanover remonstrated 
with Bismarck against the march through her territory; 
Hamburg, Llibeck, and Eutin likewise raised their voices 
in formal protest against the entrance of the Prussiaii troops. 
But in vain. Bismarck's only concession was to bring the 
Austrian troops north by way of Silesia to avoid their cross- 
ing Saxony or Bavaria. By the end of January, 1864, the 
allied armies were at the Eider River. 

Field Marshal von Wrangel, who' had been given command 
of the allied armies, was past eighty years of age. He had 
gained a splendid reputation as an officer, but as a com* 
mander-in-chief he was lacking in several essential qualities 
— sound and ^ure judgment, firmness of decision, a broad 
view of strategical matters, and equability of temper. He 
commanded an army, however, in which the invigorating 
influence of von Moltke was already beginning to be felt. 
Men and officers alike were well trained and well disciplined, 
and the organization was equal to that of any army in 
Europe. Moreover, the Prussians possessed a great advan- 
tage over their northern enemy in that they were armed with 
the needle-gun, a breech-loading, bolt-action rifle which 
was the forerunner of the modern military rifle. In the 
light of present-day knowledge of small arms, the needle- 
gun, with its slender firing pin so easily broken, with its 
device for checking the gas escape at the breech so crude 
ss to make firing from the shoulder impossible after the first 
few shots, with its tendency to rapid fouling, — the needle- 
gun seems but an imperfect weapon with which to go to 
war. But it could be &ed at least three tinues as rapidly 
as any oth^ gun then in existence, and to the Danes, armed 

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as they were with the muzzle-loading rifle, the needle-gun 
must have seemed- a very formidable weapon. 

The condition of the Danish army presented a complete 
antithesis to that of the allied powers. Jn General de Meza, 
their commander-in-chief, the Danes possessed an able, 
prudent, and energetic officer. But he was so hampered 
by two things as to be helpless — a vacillating war depart- 
ment and an untrained army. Denmark did not spend the 
money on her army that Prussia spent on hers. Though 
universal service was required, the training of the individual 
soldier lasted but ten months. The officers, insufficient 
in number, were underpaid and imperfectly educated to 
their duties. When the war broke out, the army was sud- 
denly increased to four times its standing strength, and 
necessary officers were created from whatever material 
was at hand. Denmark opposed to the allied army of 67,000 
splendid soldiers an organization of but 44,000 untrained, 
undisciplined, poorly officered troops. Of these, the Schles- 
wig contingent was known to be favorable to the Germans. 

Denmark possessed one advantage, however, in that 
her navy, though small, was superior to the Prussian navy, 
and commanded the Baltic. By its means she hoped to 
transport her troops, destroy the Prussian ships, and block- 
ade and harass the German seaport towns. To contend 
successfully against it, the allies made plans to bring Aus- 
trian ships from the Mediterranean. 

A second advantage for Denmark was the Dannevirke. 
This was the ancient frontier line of defense between Danes 
and Germans, extending west from Schleswig city, on that 
arm of the Baltic known as the Schlei, to the headwaters 
of the Rheide River, a distance of 10| miles. It was first 
built in the ninth century, and since then had been many 
times taken and retaken. After its last defense in 1848, 
it had been rebuilt and fortified until in 1864 it was consid- 
ered well-nigh impregnable. Napoleon III said that the 
Germans would halt two years before it. To the eastward 

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BISMARCK'S POLICIES, 18612-1864 81 

on the Schlei, the position was still further strengthened 
by fortifications at Mijssunde, a crossing point of the Schlei. 
The western flank of the Dannevirke was protected by the 
rivers Rheide and Treene, and by the low swamps and bogs 
along their banks. On a total front of forty-three miles, 
from the Treene River to the Baltic proper, the Danes ex- 
tended their army of 44,000, with the bulk of it — some 
29,000 — at the Dannevirke itself. Here, behind their 
fortifications, they awaited the attack of the Prussians. 

To von Moltke making his preparations, the Danish plan 
was plain. He did not purpose to wear out his army in 
assaults upon a strongly fortified position. Nor did he 
mean to waste time in besieging the fortified towns of Dtlp- 
pel and! Fredericia. To him the success of the Danes lay 
in one army: his own success lay in defeating that army 
in Jutland before it could withdraw from island to island in 
the archipelago and draw out the war interminably. His 
plan, therefore, was as follows : to dross the Schlei at some 
weakly defended point east.of Missunde, meanwhile making 
demonstrations in front of the Dannevirke ; to fall upon the 
Danes' left flank ; prevent their retreat to Dtippel ; to drive 
them to the west, and there annihilate th^m. Then when 
his armies had overrun Jutland and the islands of FUnen 
and Alsen, he felt that Prussia could make what terms she 

The plan as outlined was without flaw. Unfortunately, 
though, in transmitting it to von Wrangel, the King did not 
see the necessity for insisting upon details. Accordingly,, 
he instructed his commander-in-chief upon two points only 
of von Moltke's plan, viz. : the Danes must not be allowed 
to reach a point of embarkation, and their retreat to Dllppel 
must be cut off. The remaining details were left to von 
Wrangel. The conunander at once proceeded to depart 
very markedly from von Moltke's plan in that he deter- 
mined that the flanking party to the east should attack at 
Misqunde and cross there, instead of nearer the sea where 

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the Schlei was unfortified and only feebly defended. Prince 
Frederick Charies was to undertake this attempt on Mis- 
sunde while the Auetrians attacked Schleswig, and the 
other Prussian corps advanced against the . western wing 
of the Danes. This was the first departure from the plan 
of the Chief of Staff! If the Prince should be successful 
in his assault, he was to cross the Schlei and move at once 
on DUppel without attacking the Danes in flank. Here 
was the second deviation from von Moltke's plan. 

On the morning of the first of February, 1864, Prussians 
and Austrians crossed the Eider and miirched on the Danne* 
virke. The Danes resisted t]^em in minor engagements 
only, so that by noon of the second the Prussians were 
before Missunde, and by the third the Austrians confronted 
the advanced posts before the Dannevirke. Prince Freder- 
ick Charles began the storming of the forts immediately. 
For three hours Missunde withstood the fixe of sixty-four 
Prussian cannon, whereupon the Prince, seeing that the. loss 
was almost entirely with his own army, determined to give 
up the attack and cross elsewhere- He desisted from the 
attempt, obtained permission from von Wrangel to force a 
passage farther to the east, and on the morning of the sixth, 
effected a crossing without opposition. 

Meanwhile the Austrians had been completely success- 
ful. The Danes fell back behind the Dannevirke, and the 
Austrians planted their cannon before the fortifications. 
The third corps (Prussian), which was advancing against 
the western wing of the Danish army, now discovered that 
the severe cold had frozen the swamps and marshes which 
the allies had expected to be a serious obstacle. Without 
opposition this corps arrived at the fortifications. Gen- 
eral de Meza knew of this weakening of his defenses by 
the weather, saw the futility of resistance, and determined 
upon an immediate evacuation of the Dannevirke. There 
were two alternatives, — to make an attack upon the allies 
in front of his fortifications, or to retreat iq)on DUm>d, 

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Knowing as he did the condition of his army, he could arrive 
at but one decision, so on the evening of the fifth, he wisely 
began his retreat to Flensburg. He arrived there safely, 
sent two brigades of his infantry and all of his cavalry to 
the north, and transferred the remainder of his army across 
the gull of Flensburg to the works at Dttppel. When, after 
crossing the Schlei, Frederick Charles got in touch with the 
Austrians, the Dannevirke was abandoned and the Danish 
army was well on its way to Flensburg, Von Moltke's 
plan was ruined. 

The first corps under the Prince was left before DUppel, . 
while the remainder of the allied army pursued the Danes 
through north Schleswig. There was practically no resist- 
ance to the advance northward, and on the. eighteenth of 
February the Prussians crossed the frontier of Jutland and 
occupied Kolding. This progress was quite to the liking of 
von Moltke and Bismarck, but unhappily for Prussian 
aspirations, the whole campaign ^as halted at this point 
by the reluctance of Austria. Tl^ Emperor Francis Joseph 
feared the other German states, he feared France, and he 
feared that a break with Great Britain would mean a coali- 
tion of France and Great Britain against the allies. More- 
ovch-, the imperial finances were in a hopeless condition, 
Hungary was on the point of revolt, and there was the usual 
unrest in Venetia and Galicia. The Emperor's reason as 
given to Bismarck, however, was a purely military one. He 
was afraid to advance into Jutland, he said, while DUppel 
and Fredericia remained in Danish hands.' What argument 
could there be for invading Jutland? Bismarck replied 
in a very convincing telegram: "The reasons are three- 
fold : reprisals for the capture of German ships, the scat- 
tering of the Danish forces, and the breaking down of the 
Danish resistance to an armistice and conference." These 
reasons were sufficient to remove the Emperor's objections. 
The plan as now modified was to lay siege to DUppel but 
at the same time to continue the occupation of Jutland to 

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prevent attacks from Ftedericia. The new agreement be- 
tween the allies was ^signed on the fifth of March, and the 
military orders were issued at once. While the new agree- 
ment was under discussion, von Wrangel had developed an 
opposition to the plan of attacking DUppel, and had failed 
in several instances to co5perate with the war depafrtment. 
When activities were renewed, the command was given to 
Crown Prince Frederick — -not actually, but virtually, 
since von Wrangel was to make no dispositions without 
first consulting the Prince. 

While Jutland was being occupied, the si^e of DUppel 
was begun. The fortifications consisted of a curved line 
of ten redoubts with both flanks resting on Alsen Sound. 
Within this line a second lin^ of trenches with lunettes was 
constructed behind the front attacked, and finally, a re- 
duit was built to cover the bridge to Alsen. The Germans 
began the siege in earnest on the fifteenth of March. Six 
redoubts were attacked. Heavy guns — twenty-four and 
thirty pounders — were brought for the siege, until by the 
time of the assault, a hundred and eighteen were in position. 
Under fire of these cannon, the parallels were constructed 
— the first on the thirty-first of March, the second on the 
eighth of April, and a third, only six hundred feet from the 
Danish works, on the tenth of April. Prince Frederick 
Charles had hoped to cut off any possible retreat of the 
Danes to Alsen by crossing the sound and capturing the 
bridgehead on the Alsen shore. He made his plans with 
great secrecy and on the night of April second attempted to 
cross. The coming of a sudden storm compelled him to 
abandon this feature of the plan and to rely solely on the 
mainland attack. He therefore constructed a fourth parallel 
but four hundred feet in front of the Danish redoubts to 
make his assault doubly certain. All day of the seventeenth 
the Prussian batteries kept up a constant fire. At 2 a.m. 
of the eighteenth they opened again and shelled the works 
until 10 A.M., when six columns rushed forward to the 

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BISMARCK'S POLICIES, 1862-1864 85 


assault. The result was never for a moment in question^ and 

within half an hour the Prussians were in possession of the 

redoubts. They were unable, however, to prevent the 

Danes from withdrawing behind the reduit and thence 

retreating to Alsen, destroying the bridge behind them. 

The cost of the success to the allies was the loss of about a 

thousand men. To an , equal Danish loss in killed and 

wounded was added a loss of thirty-five hundred prisoners, 

one hundred and fifteen cannon, and four thousand rifles. 

The occupation of Jutland was marked by dissension. 
Von Wrangel ..wished to attack Predericia: von Moltke 
would not hear of it. The Danish troops elsewhere resisted 
feebly, and soon all Jutland south of Lijm Fjord was in 
the hands of the Germans. When DUppel fell, the Danes 
gave up the idea of holding Fredericia. On the twenty-eighth 
of April, the garrison was transported to Flinen, and the 
Austrians entered the works. Von Moltke wished to at- 
tack Ftinen at once, but the Austrian Marshal von Gablenz 
would not agree, and the plan was dropped. 

The war now came to a standstill. Bismarck had ac- 
ceded to Great Britain's demands for a Conference, and the 
delegates had met in London on April ^5. On May 12, 
a truce of one month was arranged — a truce which was 
later extended to June 25. In London, by insisting upon 
incorporating Schleswig with Denmark, the Danish dele- 
gates so alienated the neutral powers, that after long debates 
and extended sessions, the conference came to nothing. 
The truce was marked in a military way by the succession 
of Prince Frederick Charles to von Wrangel as commander- 
in-chief, nominally as well as actually, and by preparations 
for a descent upon the islands of Alsen and FUnen. 

When the truce ended. Prince Frederick Charles again 
took up the aggressive and arranged for an immediate secret 
crossing to Alsen. On the night of the twenty-ninth of Jime, 
Greneral Herwarth, who had succeeded* the Prince as corps 
commanfler, assembled his troops on the shore of the sound 


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opposite Amkiel. He had previously collected here suffi- 
cient boats and pontoons to hold twenty-five hundred men, 
and he had chosen a crossing point of not more than a thou- 
sand feet in width. TJie attempt was successful* Though 
Herwarth's men were discovered in crossing, the Danes 
had not sufficient force at hand to resist them. The boats 
brought reinforcements regularly to the allies, and their 
troops pressed relentlessly southward. The Danes gave up 
all hope of resistance, and hastened an embarkation from 
the southernmost point of the island. By the first of July, 
except for twenty-five hundred prisoners in the hands of the 
Prussians, there was not a Dane on Alsen. 

This victory marks the ending of official resii^tance by 
Denmark. The government asked itself; If Alsen could 
be taken, why not FUnen? Why not Copenhagen itself? 
The German armies completed without difficulty the occu- 
pation of Jutland, and by July 20 reached the northern- 
most point of the peninsula. A naval victory for the allies 
during this same period completed the despondency of the 
Danes, and they concluded an armistice willingly.^ . 

On August 1 a preliminary peace was signed, by which 
Denmark yielded ;ip all rights in the duchies of Schleswig, 
Holstein, and Lauenburg, this last named being a very 
small duchy to the south of the other two. After some 
further negotiations to determine the exact boundaries and 
to apportion the duchies' share of the Danish debt, the. 
final treaty of peace was signed at Vienna October 27, 

Bismarck had succeeded in the first stage of his policy. 
He had forever separated the duchies from Denmark. He 
had managed to have them handed over to the joint pos- 
session of Austria and Prussia, Further, throughout the 
whole proceedings, he succeeded in having Prussia appear 
diplomatically in the right and his opponent diplomatically' 
in the wrong, thus giving neither to France nor to England 
a legitimate excuse for intervention on the side of Denmark. 

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BISMARCK'S POLICIES, 1862-1864 8*; 

And still further, in this first step toward the realization of 
his ambitions, he had been able to enlist Austria on his side, 
thus forestalling a possible attack upon the Prussian rear 
while the army was fighting in Denmark. He had every 
reason to congratulate himself upon the success of his policy. 
And yet, before the annexation upon which he had set his 
heart was completed, he had serious problems to solve. 

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The successful termination of the Danish War by no 
means solved the Schleswig-Holstein question. The duchies 
had, it is true, been permanently separated from Denmark, 
but their ultimate status had not been determined in the 
treaty of peace, had not indeed been agreed upon by the 
two countries in their preliminary negotiations before the 
war. Provisionally, they were jointly administered by the 
two powers. Such arrangement was temporary, however, 
and particularly unsatisfactory to Austria, for under any 
joint administration Prussia would have a distinct advantage 
over Austria because of her proximity to the duchies. 
Austria, therefore, desired that the question of succession 
should be at once determined. She favored the candidacy 
of Prince Frederick of Augustenburg, under whom it was 
to be expected that, the duchies would be admitted to the 
confederation. The same desire was held by Germans 
throughout the confederation and by Prussians. Bismarck, 
however, was persuading the King to support him in a 
policy directed toward a different end, namely, the ultimate 
incorporation of the duchies into Prussia. It was necessary 
in pursuance of this policy to prevent the Prince of Augus- 
tenburg from obtaining the throne. The Prussian chancellor 
could not give an absolute and unqualified refusal to Aus- 
tria, for such action would have put Prussia in the wrong 
before Germany and the rest of Europe, and also might 
have revealed too clearly his real intentions. So Bismarck 

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delayed the decision by questioning the validity of Augus- 
tenburg's claim to the duchies and by proposing an investi- 
gation into the merits of all the claims which had been 
presented. On its face this proposal-seemed fair and jus.t» 
for no one could deny that Augustenburg's claim was 
l^ally doubtfid, since his father had definitely renounced 
.his right to the duchies in favor of the King of Denmark, 
and no one could deny that the rights of other claimants 
should be investigated. Bismarck's hope was that before 
such investigation should be completed he might so intrigue 
as to be able to invite war with Austria and thus cast the 
final disposition of the duchies (and of the larger question 
concerning Prussian primacy in Germany) to the decision 
of force. When Austria showed herself disposed to urge 
still further the Prince's cause, Bismarck assented on the 
condition that Prussia, in order to prevent Danish aggres- 
sion, should be allowed to have control of the army and 
finances in the duchies. Naturally, as Bismarck had ex- 
pected, both Austria and the Prince rejected these terms, 
so the question remained open for further parley. Thus, 
through the remainder of 1864 and the first half of 1865, the 
Schleswig-Holstein issue was the cause of an almost con- 
tinuous series of notes and "conversations" between Austria 
and Prussia. The problem was actually more difficult now 
thai the Danish War was finished. 

If Austria had been in good condition internally and ex- 
ternally she would have cut these negotiations short. She 
would have arbitrarily asserted her will and, by a suflBcient 
show of force, carried her will into execution. But Austria 
faced civil war within, and strong hostile nations without, 
her boundaries. Prussia was by no means her only enemy : 
the Schleswig-Holstein problem was not so serious as the 
problem presented by her internal affairs. 

Hence Austria was forced to accept for the time being 
an unsatisfactory status for the two duchies. In the con- 
vention of Gastein (August 14, 1865), the two great states 

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patched up an agreement whereby Austria undertook to 
administer Holstein and Prussia Schleswig. Further, Austria, 
in consideration of a sum of money paid to her by Prussia, 
yielded up all her claims upon the small duchy of Lauenbui^ 
and allowed that territory to be incorporated into Prussia. 

The Convention of Gastein was regarded by Bismarck 
as a mere stop-gap. "We have," said he, "papered over 
the cracks." It was of no importance in settling the real 
issue at stake. One element in the convention, the ac- 
quisition of Lauenburg by Prussia, was important as it 
affected the King. Bismarck remarks : * ' After the Gastein 
Convention and the occupation of Lauenburg, the first 
addition made to the kingdom under King William, his 
frame of mind, so far as I could observe, underwent a 
psychological change; he developed a taste for conquest." 
Bismarck himself, realizing that the inevitable conflict with 
Austria was drawing near, utilized the temporary respite 
in the endeavor vso to arrange the. relations of Prussia with 
other states of Europe that Austria would find no allies in 
the struggle. 


i. Russia 

Of Russia's friendly neutrality he felt certain. No change 
in the relations between Russia and Prussia had occurred 
to diminish the gratitude Alexander felt for Prussian aid 
at the time of the Polish rebellion in 1863. Indignation 
against Austria was still hot in the Czar's empire. 

ii. Great Britain 

Great Britain was during these years gradually trans- 
ferring her chief interests from European politics to her 
world commerce. The position of Great Britain in, con- 

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tinental a£^rs just after Waterloo, as contrasted with her 
position during the years just after 1860, reveals a great 
decrease in prestige accompanied by a notable increase in 
material prosperity. 

Albert, the Prince Consort, died December 14, 1861, 
and left Queen Victoria to bear the burden of govern- 
ment alone. The Liberals, led by Palmerston and Russell, 
with Gladstone as chancellor of the exchequer, had a 
comfortable working majority in the House of Commons. 
In spite of the severe distress in the Lancashire mill' dis- 
tricts resulting from the Civil War in the United States 
and the stoppage of cotton supplies, the country was on 
the whole prospering amazingly. The exports which in 1852 
had been £75,000,000 had risen by 1866 to £188,000,000; 
and the total foreign trade, which was £376,000,000 in 
1860, increased to £634,000,000 in the six years. ^ The Lib- 
erals claimed for themselves the credit for this abounding 
prosperity. Gladstone^ in his position at the exchequer, 
had in particular laid the foundations of a reputation which 
was soon to make him the logical prime minister. Domes- 
tic politics were uniformly calm. The most serious issues 
were to be found in the discussions accompanying the 
annual budgets.^ 

But this quiet in domestic politics and this increase in 
material prosperity were accompanied by a great decrease 
in prestige in foreign a£Fairs. Dreading to interrupt by 
war or by threat of war the stream of prosperity, the Liberal 
ministers revealed a weakness which the continental states- 
men were quick to realize. Grpat Britain's doctrine of 
"splendid isolation" and "non-interference" prevented her 
from playing an important part in Eiirop^an poUtics during 
this period when such momentous changes were taking 
place. For example, Palmerston, Russell, Gladstone, and 
all the Liberal leaders sympathized deeply with the Poles 
in theic rebellion of 1863 ; they wished to lend their moral 
support to "oppressed nationalities," but they were un- 

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willing to back up their protests by a show or threat oi 
force. They wrote a note to the Czar, and the Czar, sup- 
ported by Prussia, returned a reply politely telling them to 
attend to their own affairs. And the matter stopped at 
that point. Furthermore, British statesmen, as well as 
the other statesmen of Europe, failed to appreciate the 
character and ambitions of Bismarck. Bismarck, of course, 
knew of the British note to Russia and of the Russian reply. 
He gauged the British spirit by this correspondence. Hence, 
a year later, when Lord Russell declared that Great Britain 
"could not see with indifference a military occupation of 
Holstein, which is only to cease upon terms injuriously 
affecting the constitution of the whole Danish monarchy," 
Bismarck paid little attention to the statement, and, with 
Austria, entered upon the Danish War in full confidence 
that Great Britain would not support Denmark with force. 
Hence, too, in 1865 and 1866, Bismarck felt that he could 
disregard Great Britain and the prospects of British inter- 
ference in an Austro-Prussian war. 

iii. France 

In France, Napoleon had, as we have seen, passed the 
time of his greatest popularity. His Italian policy had 
alienated the strong CathoUc party, and his free trade 
tendencies as illustrated by his commercial agreement with 
England in 1860 had lost him the support of the powerful 
manufacturing interests. He had been forced to grant 
some significant concessiops to the liberals in order to gain 
needed political support in his parliament. 

Napoleon was too shrewd not to be aware of the change 
in sentiment toward him among the people. It was certain 
that, were the opportunity offered to make a brilliant stroke 
to recoup his lost prestige, he would eagerly grasp it. In- 
deed, he had tried to dazzle the French by the prospects of 
a great Mexican empire under French protection and had 

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waste4 precious French lives in that far-oflf country from 
1862 to 1866, only to be thwarted finally by the threatened 
armed intervention of the United States. It would more 
than make up for his past failures, however, if he could, 
during the progress of an Austro-Prussian war, acquire the 
long-coveted Rhine provinces. Bismarck, knowing Napo- 
leon and fully informed of the political and popular con- 
ditions in France, realized that before any decisive steps 
could be taken against Austria he must come to some 
understanding with the French Emperor. For this purpose 
he arranged for a secret meeting with Napoleon. 

In October, 1865, Bismarck, ostensibly for the sake of 
his health, went to take the sea baths at Biarritz in south- 
western France. Napoleon and the imperial family chanced 
also at the same time to be ''taking the baths" at Biarritz. 
For ai fortnight Bismarck remained there in close ^d con- 
stant association with the Emperor, exerting himself to be 
agreeable. "A really great man," writes M. Merim6e, who 
met him at this time, "free from feeling and full of esprit.** 
Just what understanding Bismarck reached with Napoleon 
during these days has never been disclosed. He had forcible 
arguments to use in gaining the good will of the Emperor. 
He knew that Napoleon favored the principle of nationali- 
ties and would thus be inclined to look with satisfaction 
upon the incorporation of the German-inhabited provinces 
of Schleswig and Holstein into the Prysso-German state. 
And he knew that Napoleon was intensely interested in 
the success -of Italy, and would therefore be pleased with 
a Prussian suggestion of a Prusso-Italian alliance. Un- 
doubtedly Bismarck influenced Napoleon by the use of 
such baits.*- The German chancellor's success appeared 
later. From subsequent events we can be certain that 
Napoleon agreed to remain neutral in the event of war be- 
tween Austria and Prussia and to further a Prussian alliance 
with Italy, and that Bismarck dangled before the Emperor's 
eyes the hope of territorial compensation for France in the 

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1m the fflSTOBY OF EUBOPE 

Rhine region. The two parted on good tenns. Napoleon 
anticipated an Austro-Prussian war wherein both states 
would weaken themselves and thus leave France the sole 
arbiter of western Europe, free to reimburse herself along 
the Rhine for her magnanimity in not taking sides against 
Prussia. Bismarck trusted for the moment in fVench 
neutrality and expected after the war to be able to trick 
Napoleon^out of his expected reward. 

iv. Italy 

Bismarck's next step was to approach Italy (in accord* 
ance with his understanding with Napoleon) in ^n endeavor 
to form an offensive alliance whereby Italy would attack 
Austria from the southeast at the same moment Prussia 
attacked her from the north. Italy was the natural enemy 
of Austria. Although the grip which Austria had so long 
had upon the Italian .peninsula had been broken by French 
aid in 1859, the Italians could not forget that Venice was 
still under Austrian control. It was Bismarck's idea, there- 
fore, to promise that, in the event of Prussia receiving 
Italian aid, Prussia in the treaty of peace would demand 
the province of Venetia for Italy. 

Italy, since her unity and freedom, had found difficult 
problems and was struggling^ hard to solve them. After 
Cavour's death in 1861, his power fell into weaker and less 
experienced hands ^ No one man had the force of char- 
acter and the grasp .of affairs that had enabled Cavour in 
the critical days of the formation of the kingdom to gain 
his success for his Eang. These later leaders debated at 
one moment the necessity of constructing good roads and 
railroads, of encouraging industry and commerce, of or- 
ganizing a strong police force to cope with the bandits who 
infested all the middle and southern parts of the country; 
and at the next moment they secretly connived at some 
wild scheme, like that of Garibaldi to arouse the Italian 
people and march in a body to seize Rome. Neither do- 

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mestic nor. foreign policy was marked by wise persistence 
and careful foresight. The leaders feared Austria, well 
knowing that she held in Venetia a gateway by which at 
will she might pour a disciplined army into the peninsula 
to win back all that she had lost. They realized also that, 
should Napoleon's policy change or his power weaken, the 
new Italy could not long endure. Thus Italy in the years 
following Cavour*s death, impbverished, misgoverned, en- 
dangered by foes within and without the peninsula, with the 
greatest diflBculty maintained her national existence. Yet, ' 
in the midst of all complexities of domestic and foreign 
politics, all It^Jian statesmen held to the cardinal principle 
that united Italy must include Venice and have Rome as 
its capital. 

The negotiations between Bismarck and the Italian dip* 
lomats were very delicate and involved, for neither party 
completely trusted ^the other. The Italians feared that 
Prussia would involve them in war with Austria, and then, 
for some advantage yielded by Austria, would leave them 
to theii^ fate. Bismarck on his part feared that Austria, 
seeing the possibility of attack from both sides, would cede 
Venetia to Italy, and that thereupon Italy, her end gained, 
would not assist Prussia by waging war. A wholesome fear 
and distrust of Napoleon entered into Bismarck's problem, 
too, for Napoleon's official word could not be implicitly 
trusted, and an alliance between Austria and France woidd 
checkmate all of Bismarck's moves and give France her 
coveted provinces along the Rhine. 

The negotiations, which began in 1865, wheii the Schles- 
wig-Holstein controversy seemed to be reaching a cUmax, 
were broken off at the time of the Gastein convention, and 
were renewed again in the spring of 1866. They finally 
culminated in a definite treaty in April. By the provisions 
of this treaty it was agreed that, if Prussia went to war with 
Austria within three months upon an issue involving reforms 
in the German confederation, Italy would at once also declare 

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war ; that neither country would make a separate peace ; and 
that Prussia would continue the fighting until the province 
of Venetia was given up by Austria. It was thus Bismarck's 
task to provoke an Austro-Prussian war within three months; 
^'I have at last succeeded in determining a King of Prussia 
to break the. intimate relations of his house with that of 
Austria," he said to one of his confidants, "to conclude a 
treaty of alhance with Italy, to accept arriingements with 
imperial France ; I am proud of the result," 


As might be expected, events moved with accelerated 
speed once the Italian alliance was sure. It was Bismarck's 
intention, however, to place the blame for war upon Austria. 
He was assisted in this by Austria's military preparations. 
It had not been possible to keep entirely secret from Austria 
the Prussian-Italian negotiations. As these negotiations 
had progressed to a favorable conclusion, Austria disposed 
her troops along the frontiers from which she might expect 
attack. The situation became critical. Bismarck injected 
the issue of reform, according to the treaty stipulations with 
Italy, by proposing to the diet a scheme, the most important 
feature of which was the election of a German national 
parliament by universal suffrage. Austria sought in the 
German confederation for friends to offset the alliance 
formed against her and succeeded in pledging to her aid the 
largest and most important states, including Bavaria, 
Wiirtemberg, Saxony, and Hanover. As the tension con- 
tinued and the purpose of Prussia became more unmis- 
takable, Austria offered to Italy, through Napoleon IH, the 
province of Venetia, provided France and Italy would not 
prevent Austria from acquiring Silesia from Prussia. Italy 
was under strong temptation to accept this offer whereby 
without a war she might gain all that a war could possibly 
yield her, but her minister. General La Marmora, had too 

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strong a sense of honor, and refused. Shortly afterwards, 
when relations were strained to the breaking-point, the 
Austrian ambassador asked Bismarck pointblank if he 
intended to violate the Gastein Convention, to which the 
cynical chancellor replied: "No; but you don't think I 
should tell you if I did." 

The anxiety of these days for Bismarck, and the daring 
of his diplomacy, can with diflBculty be imagined. Austria 
stood with the traditions of centm-ies of greatness behind 
her, with the heritage of leadership among the German 
peoples, and with all the great south-German states of the 
confederation linked to her in alliance. Prussia was the 
upstart state seeking to transform itself into one of the 
great powers, to push its way and obtrude itself to the first 
place in the councils of Europe. And Bismarck was almost 
alone in Prussia in his wish for the test of force. During 
the anxious months before the outbreak of war, the King 
received petition after petition beseeching him to dismiss 
Bismarck and keep peace with Austria. Bismarck's life 
was in danger from fanatics who believed they would be 
performing a patriotic service by removing him from the 
scene before he provoked what was often described as a 
fratricidal war. Bismarck was daring all on the outcome. 
Had the war ended, as the greater part of Europe believed 
it would, in favor of Austria, or had the war been long and 
doubtful and Napoleon taken advantage of Prussia's struggle 
to claim and seize land along the Rhine, all Prussia would 
have risen to condemn Bismarck as the cause of the national 
ruin. Both the minister and his royal master would have 
been plimged into lasting ignominy. 

By the beginning of June all Europe realized that war was 
but a matter of a, few days. Austria had mobilized her 
armies, and in her financial condition could not long endure 
the abnormal expense without a decision. She finally gave 
Prussia the necessary pretext for action by proposing that 
the final disposition of Schleswig and Holstein be referred 

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to the Diet of the Confederation for report. Upon this 
proposal, Bismarck was quick to move. He asserted that 
it was a breach of the Convention of Gastein, and Prussia 
poured troops into Holstein. On June 11 Austria de- 
clared Prussia's act an act of hostility, and, in the Diet of 
the Confederation, moved the mobilization of the federal 
forces to punish Prussia. On June 14, the Austrian motion 
in a slightly modified form was carried, after the Prussian 
chancellor had declared that Prussia would regard every 
member who voted for it as her enemy. Aligned with 
Austria in the vote was all of Germany except a few of 
the small northern states. Prussia's representative there- 
upon formally withdrew from the Diet and war began. 


If Prussia's diplomatic success in the Seven Weeks (or 
Austro-Prussian) War. was the work of a single great man 
— von Bismarck — her strategic success was equally the 
work of another great man — von Moltke. 

Helmuth Carl von Moltke was bom at Parchim in 
Mecklenburg on the 26th of October, 1800. His first 
military service was with the armies of Denmark, whither 
his father had moved when the boy was five years old. He 
obtained his commission as Second Lieutenant when he 
was eighteen, but he seems to have foreseen the possibilities 
of service with the Prussian army so clearly that at twenty- 
one, he resigned from the service of Frederick VI, and sou^t 
that of Frederick William HI. As a second lieutenant he 
attended the general war school where he made such a 
reputation that upon his promotion to First Lieutenant in 
1883, he was detailed to a minor position on the General 
Staff. In 1835 he became military adviser to the Sultan 
of Turkey, in whose service he remained two years, and 
whom he assisted in that unfortunate campaign against the 
usurping Mehemet Ali of Egypt. After the disastrous 

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battle of Nezib (where he commanded the Turkish artillery), 
von Moltke returned to Prussia and took up his regular 
military work there. His superior officers recognized his 
worth as a staff officer, and appointed him to increasingly 
important positions, until he was given that of Chief of 
Staff of the 4th Army Corps, where he served directly under 
the Crown Prince William. 

In 1867, within a week from the time when he became 
regent for his brother. Prince William appointed von 
Moltke — now a Major-General — Chief-of-Staff of the 
entire army. From that day dates the modem conception 
of waging war. Immediately von Moltke began a re- 
organization of the Staff Corps which resulted in the brilliant 
victories of 1866 and 1870. At once he began adapting 
the tactical and strategical methods to the new systems of 
commimication and transportation ; he started the training 
of his staffs in the army in accordance with those methods ; 
he worked out schemes for the mobilization of his armies 
under all conditions ; and, lastly, he made a careful study 
of European politics in connection with the possibilities 
of military activities. Thus, his Danish campaign (though 
sadly bungled by von Wrangel) was admirably conceived 
and worked out long before the breach of diplomatic re- 
lations occurred. Von Moltke's personality dominated the 
military policy of Germany until his retirement from the 
Staff in 1888, but his methods are still employed the world 
over. By his death in 1891, Germany lost the greatest 
strategist of the last hundred' years, but she had profited 
to the utmost from his talents. His great success lay in 
that he always tried to get at the meaning of war, and never 
thought of it as a combination of set rules and fixed moves. 
He was bold, but cautious, and when his operations ex- 
posed his armies to great dangers, it could always be said 
that no one saw those dangers more clearly, nor guarded 
against them more carefully than von Moltke. It is related 
of Wellington that he once proudly remarked, "Many men 

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can march troops. I can feed them." Von Moltke could 
do both. 

Because of the alliances of both states, Austria and Prussia 
were forced to wage war over a wide area. The combined 
states of Hanover, Bavaria, Baden, and Hesse threatened 
Prussia to the west and north, Austria and Saxony to the 
south. The Italian aUiance balanced this disadvantage 
by forcing Austria to keep troops in Venetia. A few words 
are sufficient to account for the minor operations. The 
Northern Army, or Army of the Main, was everywhere 
successful, x)ccupied almost the whole of the hostile territory 
to the west, and was soon in a position to dictate the terms 
of peace. In Venetia, the Italians and Austrians met in 
a single engagement at Custozza where the latter were 
victorious. The campaign is worthy of notice principally 
because it kept three Austrian corps from participation in 
the Bohemian operations. 

Bohemia, where the approaching struggle was destined 
to center, has many times been the fighting ground of 
German armies. In the Thirty Years* War, in the War of 
the Austrian Succession, and in the Seven Years* War, 
many a battle was fought within Bohemia's boundaries. 
If an east and west line were to be drawn through Prague, 
the capital of Bohemia, it could be used as the base of a 
triangle whose sides, formed by the Metal Mountains on 
the northwest, and by the Giant Mountains on the north- 
east, meet in an obtuse angle some sixty miles to the north. 
The territory included within this triangle formed the 
theater of operations of the principal activities. Beyond 
the left side of the triangle lies Saxony, with a connecting 
pass where the river Elbe has forced its way through the 
Metal Mountains. Beyond the right side lies Prussian 
Silesia, with communicating passes through the Giant 
Mountains at Parschnitz, Branau, and Nachod. Within 
the angle of the two mountain ranges, the Elbe and the 
Iser form two other barriers to troops coming from Saxony 

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and Silesia — barriers which must be crossed by separate 
Prussian armies seeking to unite on Austrian territory. 
The terrain varies from steep mountainous cotmtry at the 
foot of the ranges to open rolling country in the valley of 
the Elbe, where the decisive battle was fought. 

The army which von Moltke was preparing to send into 
Austria had its beginnings in the labors of General Scham- 
horst. When, after the defeat of Jena in 1806, the humihat- 
ing treaty of Tilsit provided that the Prussian army should 
not number more than 43,000 men, Scharnhorst evolved 
the idea of replacing the professional army by a national 
one, in which it should be the duty of every physically fit 
male citizen to serve. He fixed upon three years as the 
period of training, and proceeded to pass thousands of 
men through the army, retaining them after their active 
service in one of the various classes of reserves. Thus, 
while the letter of the treaty was observed, the spirit was 
evaded, and forty thousand men were added yearly to the 
effective forces of Prussia, Upon the accession to the 
throne of William I (1861), the standing, or active, army was 
increased to 63,000, so that by the time the Austrian diflGi- 
culty came to a head, Prussia's forces, reserves and actives, 
niunbered some 660,000 men. Not all these were or- 
ganized, however. The effective army was composed of 
eight regular army corps and the Guard Corps — the last, 
a corps chosen from all over * Prussia, whereas the other 
corps were enlisted each from a province or district. Each 
corps was compK>sed of two divisions, and the divisions in 
turn were composed of two brigades of infantry, a regiment 
of cavalry, and an AbteUung (24 gims) of artillery. The 
brigade was made up of two regiments of three battalions 
each, the battalion numbering, when mobilized, about 
1000 men. These divisions, with the additional corps 
troops, brought the strength of the invading army up to 
278,600 men. The troops were divided into three armies 
as follows: Half of the 7th Corps, the 8th Corps with 

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reserve cavalry and artillery, under General Herwath von 
Bittenfeld, constituted the Army of the Elbe; the 2d, 8d, 
and 4th Corps, under Prince Frederick Charles, of Schleswig- 
Holstein fame, made up the 1st Army ; and the 1st, 5th, 6th, 
and Guard Corps, and a cavalry division, under Crown 
Prince Frederick of Prussia, formed the 2d Army. The 
Army of the Elbe was to assemble in Prussian Saxony, the 
1st Army in Lausitz, and the 2d Army in Prussian Silesia. . 

The Prussian infantry employed the needle-gun which 
had been used with such eflfect in the Danish War, and 
which despite its defects was still the most effective mili- 
tary arm on the continent. It could be fired more rapidly 
than any other and it could be loaded while the soldier was 
in a prone position. The artillery — 1000 guns in all — 
was armed with 4-, 6-, and 12-pounder bronze guns, of 
which about 40 per cent were rifled. The effective range 
of the best of them was not more than 1400 yards. In the 
matter of training, the infantry was the superior arm, and 
throughout the war was better handled tactically than 
either the cavalry or the artillery. 

To oppose this Prussian force, Austria could drjaw upon 
600,000 men. Her military system, based on that of France, 
was that of conscription — a method which implies that the 
individual chosen by lot for service had the Hberty of pur- 
chasing a substitute from among those who had escaped 
being drawn for enUstment'in the recruit lottery. It is a 
system which does not produce so high a standard in the 
army as that of universal service, nor does it supply so many 
reserves. Austria from a population of 35 milUons could 
muster 600,000 men: Prussia from 18 millions could de- 
pend upon 660,000 men A total of ten Austrian Army 
corps of four brigades each (there was no regular divisional 
organization) was formed into two armies: the Army of 
the North, consisting of the 1st, 2d, 4th,. 6th, 8th, 9th, and 
10th Corps with reserve cavalry and artillery, under Field 
Marshal von Benedek; the Army of the South, composed 

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of the 6th, 7th, and 9th Corps, under the Archduke Albrecht. 
The former was to mobilize in Moravia, the latter in Venetia. 

As to arms, their infantry weapon, the muzzle-loading 
rifle, had a longer range than the Prussian needle-gun, but 
was inferior in every other respect. Their guns, number- 
ing 800, were of the same sizes as those of their adversary, 
but were all rifled and had a longer range — about 1700 
or 1800 yards. The artillery gained a reputation for good 
shooting during the war: the infantry one for bad. As 
compared with the Prussian forces tactically, Austria's 
artillery was perhaps better trained than was her enemy's ; 
her infantry was neither as well trained nor as well com- 

In the matter of mobilization, Austria had the advantage. 
Prussia was confronted with the problem of concentrating 
her armies to meet any Austrian attack without invading 
Saxon territory — a situation forced upon her by King 
William's anxiety to avoid the appearance of aggression. 
And because Saxony juts northward into Prussian territory 
the military leaders feared that the Southern allies might 
concentrate at a single point from which they could strike 
either at Breslau or Berlin. So von Moltke was forced to 
the expedient of detaining his troops at the five termini of 
the railroads to the Prussian frontier, and then bringing 
the diflFerent' portions of his army together by a flank march 
along the Saxon boundary. In the face of an active ag- 
gressive enemy such a movement would have been perilous, 
but the Prussian Chief of Staff knew his opponent and felt 
safe in issuing his orders as he did. 

Austria, like her enemy, wished to give the appearance 
in the eyes of Europe of being more sinned against than 
sinning, but whereas Prussia was prepared to maintain this 
hypocritical policy only in the field of diplomacy, Austria 
was prepared to carry it into the theater of military opera- 
tions as well. Such a resolve necessarily hampered the 
Austrian commander-in-chief in his choice of a plan of 

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action, and threw upon him the impossible problem oi 
attempting to select his field of battle after having sm-- 
rendered the initiative without a contest. A concentra- 
tion with the idea of invading Prussia behind it, might have 
been made in Moravia, in Bohemia, or in Saxony. Any one 
of these plans would have caused the northern adversary 
much uneasiness. Instead, a purely defensive scheme was 
designed whereby the Austrian army of the north, concen- 
trated near the fortress of Olmtitz, should await the advance 
of the Prussian army upon Vienna. 

The news of this concentration provoked a blunder on 
the part of the Prussians. Austria's massing of forces at 
Olmiitz apparently meant an attack upon Breslau. The 
Crown Prince (in all probability against the direct wish of 
von Moltke), was accordingly ordered to move his army 
eastward to meet such an attempt. By this movement, 
the front of the Prussian army, which had been reduced 
from 275 to 155 miles by the hazardous flank march de- 
scribed above, was again extended dangerously, and the 
gap of some thirty miles which had existed between the 
right of the 2d Army and the left of the 1st Army was 
widened by about fifty miles. Von Benedek, the Austrian 
commander, failed to take advantage of the opportunity 
offered, and the day which followed the declaration of war 
(night of June 15-16, 1866) found him still awaiting for 
an overt act from his enemy. 

Not so von Moltke. Within a few hours of the declara- 
tion, the Army of the Elbe crossed the Saxon frontier, and 
commenced a triumphant march upon Dresden. The 
Saxon troops, following the plan of their allies, abandoned 
their own territory and fell back to join the Austrians. 
This advance of the Prussians determined von Benedek to 
move into Bohemia and take up a position near Josefstadt 
between the two advancing Prussian armies. Even von 
Moltke admits that this move was wise if von Benedek 
were constrained to act upon the defensive, but most strate- 

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gists are agreed that the Crown Prince's army in Silesia 
offered a more favorable objective, and that von Benedek 
lost his greatest chance of success when he failed to grasp 
the opportunity to defeat his enemy in detail. Such a 
move would have necessitated an assumption of the aggres- 
sive, and von Benedek was already committed to the defen- 
sive. His position was not, however, without merit. By 
placing his armies near Josefstadt, he brought into play on 
his side the natural obstacles of the terrain outlined above. 
The divided Prussian armies were separated by the Giant 
Mountains and the Metal Mountains, by the Elbe and the 
Iser. To have held the passes of the mountains, at Par- 
schnitz, Nachod, and Braunau in the Giant Range and 
those at Getschen and Reichenberg in the Metal Range, 
meanwhile keeping the bulk of his army ready to strike in 
any direction against either of his advancing foes, would 
have made the chances of success largely in von Benedek*s 
favor. But he chose the other course and prepared for a 
passive defense. 

The campaign now moved with great rapidity. On 
June 16 von Bittenfeld crossed the Saxon frontier. In 
less than three weeks the opposing armies met at K5nig- 
grlCtz in a battle which was the deciding point of the war. 

On the 18th of June the Army of the Elbe and the 1st 
Army were imited under Prince Frederick Charles, and 
plans were laid for the invasion of Bohemia. Prince 
Frederick Charles and the Crown Prince were to advance 
into Bohemia, one front the northwest, the other from the 
northeast, and endeavor to concentrate near Gitschin. A 
concentration might have been made by moving either 
army to join the other behind the cover of the mountain 
ranges, but such a movement would have given the Aus- 
trians ten or twelve days' time in which they could have 
reached Josefstadt without hindrance. No; the concen- 
tration must be made by marching toward the center of 
the circle. The danger was great, but the advantage to 

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be gained was decisive, and von Moltke» although he 
realized the peril, deliberately accepted it for the sake of 
ultimate success. The union of the two armies took place 
on the field of K5niggrfitz. Let us follow the movements 
of each army separately. 

Having failed to close the passes of the Metal Mountains, 
von Benedek now sought to take advantage of the River 
Iser, the second natural obstacle in the way of the advanc- 
ing army of Prince Frederick Charles. Accordingly, on the 
26th of June he issued orders to the Grown Prince of Saxony, 
commanding the Saxon and Austrian troops on the Iser, 
to hold the crossings of the river at all costs. The orders 
came too late, for on the 25th, in the minor engagements at 
Hiihnerwasser and Turnau, the Prussians had secured the 
crossings of the Iser — an advantage they followed up by 
defeating the Saxon Crown Prince's troops at Podol on the 
26th. These actions, though of not great compass, compelled 
the Saxons to withdraw toward Gitschin. Their retreat was 
covered by an unsuccessful rear guard action at MUnschen- 
grfitz on the 28th of June, and their defeat at that point 
enabled the Prussians to confront them again on the 30th 
at Gitschin. Here ensued an all day's battle with the chance 
of success always on the side of the Prussians. The final 
entry into the village found the allied forces in the greatest 
confusion, their trains hopelessly entangled in the streets, 
and their troops in panic. Though the Saxons managed 
to retire in something like order, the Austrians retreated 
in a disorder which was not reduced until the 2d of July. 
On the same day (June 30) communication was established 
between the Prussian armies. July 2, the eve of K5nig* 
grfitz, found the army of Prince Frederick Charles in the 
neighborhood of Horitz and Milowitz prepared to advance 
upon the Austrian army. 

Meanwhile the Crown Prince of Prussia was leading the 
2d Army through a similar series of victories to the east. 
His was a more difficult task then that of the 1st Army, 

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for the scarcity of roads through the Giant Mountains 
necessitated the division of his army into tRree parts in 
order that it might take advantage of the passes of Parsch- 
nitz, Braunau» and Nachod. The first encounter was at 
Trautenau on the 27th of June, and here for the only time 
during the war were the Austrians victorious. The Prus- 
sian attempt to cross the Aupa at Trautenau was defeated 
after several hours of heavy fighting, and the first corps 
was pushed back across the frontier. The victory was not 
of any great value to the Austrians, for not only did they 
fail to inflict a decisive defeat, but they lost' nearly five 
times as heavily as their discomfited enemy. At Soor on 
the following day they lost more than they had gained at 
Trautenau, for by their defeat they failed to prevent a 
union of the various parts of the Crown Prince's army. To 
the southward, the same day that witnessed Trautenau 
(June 27) saw an ineffectual attempt on the part of Ihe 
Austrians to stop the Prussian advance through the pass at 
Nachod. A Prussian success at Skalitz on the following 
day left no obstacle in the way of the reunion of the units 
of the 1st Army. One more brush with the Austrians at 
Schweinschfidel on the 29th of June brought the now ex- 
ultant 2d Army to the line of the Elbe, where 'on the 30th 
they established a connection with the army of Ptince 
Frederick Charles. 

The continued successes of the advancing Prussians made 
it evident to von Benedek that he could never reach Josef- 
stadt, for though the lack of skill in the handling of the 
Prussian cavalry had permitted the defeated Austrians 
after each of these battles to withdraw with morale un- 
shaken, the reverses at Gitschin, with the disorderly rout 
which followed, pointed plainly to an inevitable disaster. 
Either he must take up a stand farther to the south, or he 
must change his plan entirely and retreat. The general 
force of circumstances compelled the former, and by the 
evening of July 2 he had taken up a position between the 

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Bistritz and the Elbe and was prepared for battle. His 
line was a rotigh semicircle, the main portions on the ridge 
between the Bistritz and the Elbe reaching from Charbusitz 
on the south nearly to Horenowes^on the north, with ad- 
vanced detachments thrown out to the front to cover the 
crossings of the Bistritz. Both flanks were refused almost 
to the Elbe, and his cavalry divisions were placed centrally 
within the defensive ring. His dispositions were not the 
best. His cavalry was completely deprived of its yiobility, 
his semicircular line was ill suited to meet the obvious 
enveloping attack, and his main line of communications, 
the road from Sadowa to K5niggr£[tz, was within easy grasp 
of tjie enemy once he broke through the defense. Finally, 
the unfordable Elbe river was behind him, a menace to a 
retreating army almost as formidable as the pursuing foe. 
And yet the position which he had chosen had some points 
in its favor. The ridge upon which his main line was posted 
effectively concealed the movements of troops in its rear, 
the field of fire was everywhere good, and his right flank 
was protected by the Trotina river, a sluggish marshy 
stream as it approaches the Elbe, and at this time greatly 
swollen by heavy rains. 

Von Moltke did not expect to find the Austrians behind 
the Bistritz. He had given von Benedek credit for select- 
ing the best battle ground available and was therefore 
prepared to learn that his adversary hlad taken up a position 
behind the Elbe where his left front would rest upon the 
fortress of Koniggrfitz, and his right would be covered by 
the Aupa and Mettau rivers. This would have been a strong 
position from which von Moltke would be forced to dislodge 
the opposing army by an enveloping attack on the right flank, 
or should that fail, by outmaneuvering von Benedek with a 
flank march to the south to threaten the Austrian line of 
communications. Again the inability to make the most of 
the cavalry was demonstrated, for after the two Prussian 
armies established communication on June 30, contact with 

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the enemy was lost, and when it was again established on 
July 2 with the two armies only four and a half miles apart, 
the Austrians were found to be occupying not the line be- 
hind the Elbe which von Moltke expected, but that behind 
the Bistritz already indicated. This discovery necessitated 
new plans on von Moltke^s part. The Prussian Chief of 
Staflf, who with King William was now at Gitschin, deter- 
mined upon that hardest of tactical maneuvers, — the 
combined frontal and flank attack delivered by converging 
armies coming from widely separated initial points and 
moving on separate lines of communication. 

The plan of battle, however, was not outlined by von 
Moltke but by Prince Frederick Charles, commanding the 
combined 1st Army and the Army of the Elbe. Acting 
under general instructions to attack should the enemy be 
encountered west of the Elbe, the Prince, as soon as he 
learned of von Benedek's position behind the Bistritz, 
issued orders for an attack to begin on the morning of the 
3d of July. His plan contemplated a frontal attack on 
the Austrians by the 1st Army, combined with an attack 
on von Benedek*s left flank by the Army of the Elbe. The 
2d Army was asked to detach one corps to protect the left 
of the attacking 1st Army. Such a plan made no use of the 
2d Army, but gave all the danger and glory of the attack 
to Prince Frederick Charles, and would undoubtedly have 
met with defeat but for the timely intervention of von 
Moltke. When the courier reached him with Prince 
Frederick Charles' attack order, he refrained from chang- 
ing the r6le outlined for the 1st Army and the Army of the 
Elbe, but modified the function of the 2d Army very 
materially. He saw that the 2d Army must attack simul- 
taneously with the other two if success were to be obtained, 
and accordingly he sent to the Crown Prince the following 
message: "Your Royal Highness will be good enough to 
take the necessary steps to march to the assistance of the 
1st Army with all your forces, moving against the right 

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flank of the enemy, who will probably be discovered on the 
march, and immediately attack him." 

Because of a misunderstanding at the Crown Prince's 
headquarters, the attack order for the 2d Army was not 
issued until about 5 a.m. on the morning of the Sd — 
two hours after the 1st Army was to be in position. Prince 
Frederick Charles, therefore, advanced to the attack know- 
ing that the 2d Army could not reach the battle field be- 
fore noon, and that for six hours at least he must resist the 
entire Austrian Army. For this reason he had determined 
to force the crossings of the Bistritz but delay a ^general 
attack until he could be assured of the support of the Crown 
Prince. Under cover of mist and driving rain, his jfirst 
battalions moved forward to open the attack on Sadowa, 
the crossing point for the Eighth Division. To the north, 
General Fransecky, commanding the 7th Division, had been 
given orders to advance when the attack became general. 
A heavy artillery duel which followed the forcing of the 
Sadowa bridge was taken by the General as a signal to 
advance, and accordingly he hurled his troops into action 
in the Swiep Wald or Maslowed Wood. This was a strong 
point in the Austrian line, and within two hours twelve 
Prussian battalions and three batteries (12 guns) found 
themselves opposed to forty battalions and a hundred guns. 
The Eighth Division was rushed forward to succor the 
Seventh, and troops in rear were hurried in turn to aid the 
Eighth, but still the Austrians maintained a superiority. 
Fortunately for the Prussians, the thick mist prevented 
their foes from making the best use of their longer range 
weapons, and the needle-g\m was able to demonstrate its 
superiority at the shorter range. Nevertheless, from eleven 
in the morning until two in the afternoon, the Prussian 
battalions were in a most dangerous situation. 

Then suddenly the Austrian attack lessened, and word 
flew about that the Crown Prince had arrived. It was true. 
From the north came the unbroken battalions of the 2d 

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Anny across the muddy fields, driving straight toward the 
church tower in Chlum. The fighting in the Swiep Wald 
relaxed and Chlum became the center of action. Here, 
too, the Prussian arms triumphed, though only after bit* 
ter fighting, and the Austrians were routed. Though von 
Benedek directed a counter-attack which resulted in the 
retaking of Roseberitz, the Prussian success was assured. 
£jng William ordered up the remaining divisions of the 
Ist Army, and by 4:30 p.m. the Austrians were in full 
retreat. Their artillery, however, kept up a determined 
fire which effectually covered their withdrawal. Mean- 
while, the Army of the Elbe and the 2d Army had met 
across the front of the 1st Army and the victorious forces 
were thrown into a confusion which made the pursuit of 
thdb* vanquished enemy impossible. The retreating troops 
maintained order until they found that the fortress of 
K5niggri(tz, at which point they had hoped to cross the 
Elbe, had closed its gates to them, whereupon the orderly 
retreat broke, each man looked to himself for orders, and 
the army became a crowded mass of fugitives, seeking 
safety in flight. 

Partly because of the existing confusion, partly because 
of political conditions, the Prussian movements which fol- 
lowed the battle of Koniggrfitz were leisurely. The Crown 
Prince's army was directed against the Austrian forces at 
Olmlitz, while the 1st and Elbe Armies were marched toward 
Vienna. From a strategical viewpoint, von Benedek's 
army should have been the objective of all the Prussian 
forces, but politics dictated a march upon the Austrian 
capital. The Archduke Albrecht, who had been recalled 
from Italy to succeed von Benedek, began at once to with- 
draw his forces to the Danube. Four corps had been 
transported from Olmlitz by train when the Prussian cavalry 
destroyed rail communications. The remaining three corps 
then started to march to Vienna, and though they encoun- 
tered the Sd Prussian Army at Tobitschau with unhappy 

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results, they were able to join the archduke on the Danube 
near Pressburg. Here at the little town of Blumenau oc- 
curred the final action of the war. An armistice which had 
been arranged to take place on the 22d of July broke oflf the 
battle sharply at noon of that day. This was the last en- 
counter in a campaign which by a series of lightning-like 
strokes had reduced the army of Austria to a mere cipher. 
"Von Moltke," says Lord Acton, "in one pitched battle, 
succeeded where Gustavus, Turenne, Frederick, and even 
Napoleon had failed." 


The war had resulted contrary to the expectations of the 
most interested observer. Napoleon III. Austria had not 
been victorious, and the war had been incredibly short. Ail 
of the French Emperor's plans were upset by the outcome. 
The very day after the battle of Koniggrfitz, the Emperor 
of Austria telegraphed to Napoleon requesting him to use 
his good offices in intervention, and confirming the cession 
of Venice to Napbleon for ultimate transfer to Italy. Na^ 
poleon, acceding to Francis Joseph's request, called upon 
the belligerents to stop hostilities and began negotiations 
for peace. 

These negotiations, so far as Austria was concerned, passed 
rapidly through the various stages. Although the Prussian 
King and a strong group of his advisers were anxious to 
demand territorial compensation from Austria and to re- 
store German unity under Prussian auspices, Bismarck's 
schemes carried the day. He argued against any territorial 
compensation from Austria on the ground that such cession 
would be an indignity which Austria could not forgive, 
whereas, now that the rivalry between the two powers in 
Germany was removed, they ought to be natural friends, 
ready to stand together in close alliance against the possibly 
hostile powers of Russia and France. Fiuiiier, he argued 

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against any effort at the moment to consolidate all the 
German states of the old confederation, because he realized 
that such an attempt would at once involve the interests of 
Prance, and perhaps induce an Austro-French alliance 
which would lose for Prussia all that she had gained in the 
war. Curiously enough, he had in his arguments the sup- 
port of the Crown Prince, who up to this time had been 
his determined opponent. Bismarck has in his own words 
given the circumstances : 

*'The resistance which I was obliged, in accordance with my 
convictions, to offer to the King's views with regard to following 
up the military successes, and to his inclination to continue the 
victorious advance, excited him to such a degree that a prolonga- 
tion of the discussion became impossible ; and, under the impres- 
sion that my opinion was rejected, I left the room with the idea 
of begging the King to allow me, in my capacity of officer, to join 
my regiment. On returning to my room I was in the mood that 
the thought occurred to me whether it would not be better to fall 
out of the open window, which was four storeys high; and I 
did not look round when I heard the door open, although I sus- 
pected that the person entering was the Crown Prince, whose 
room in the same corridor I had just passed. I felt his hand on 
my shoulder, whilst he said : * You know that I was against this 
war. You considered it necessary, and the responsibility for it 
lies on you. If you are now persuaded that our end is attained, 
and peace must now be concluded, I am ready to support you 
and defend your opinion with my father.' He then repaired to 
the King, and came back after a short half hour, in the same calm, 
friendly mood, but with the words: *It has been very difficult 
business, but my father has consented.' This consent found ex- 
pression in a note written with lead pencil on the margin of one 
of my last memoranda, something to this effect: 'Inasmuch as 
my Minister-President has left me in the lurch in the face of the 
enemy, and here I am not in a position to supply his place, I have 
discussed the question with my son ; and as he has associated him- 
self with the Minister-President's opinion, I find myself reluc- 
tantly compelled, after such brilliant victories on the part of the 
army, to bite the sour apple and accept so disgraceful a peace.' 
I do not think I am mistaken as to the exact words, although the 
document is not accessible to me at present. In any case I have 

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given the sense of it ; and, despite its bitterness of expression, it 
was to me a joyful release from a tension that was becoming un- 
bearable. I gladly accepted the Royal assent to what I regarded 
as politically necessary without taking offence at its ungracious 
form. At this time military impressions were dominant in the 
King's mind ; and the strong need he felt of pursuing the hitherto 
dazzling course of victory perhaps influenced him more than 
political and diplomatic consideration. 

" The only residuum that the above note of the King's, which 
the Crown Prince brought me, left in my mind was the recollection 
that I was obliged to vex a master whom personally I loved as I 
did him." 

Bismarck's own aim was to gain Napoleon's acquiescence 
in a very considerable extension of Prussian territory to 
be acquired by the incorporation into Prussia of certain 
of the smaller German states which she had conquered in 
the war. That acquiescence once gained, late in July, 
Bismarck hurried the negotiations with all possible speed. 
An armistice was arranged on the 22d of July and four days 
later the preliminaries of peace were signed at Nikolsburg. 
Two days after the preliminaries were signed, these were 
ratified. Although Bismarck could delay negotiations 
when he chose, he well knew the necessity at the present 
moment of rushing through all these arrangements before 
their full import could be understood by Europe at large. 

The definite Treaty of Peace based upon these preliminary 
provisions was signed at Prague on the 28d of August. By 
the terms of this treaty, Austria agreed : (1) to the union 
of Venetia with the Kingdom of Italy ; (2) to the recognition 
of the dissolution of the German Confederation ; (3) to the 
establishment of a new confederation north of the river 
Main in which Austria should have no part; (4) to the 
acquisition by Prussia of all of Schleswig and Holstein and 
of any other territories in North Germany; and (5) to a 
payment to Prussia of 40,000,000 thalers indemnity. 

The war against those German states which had been allies 
of Austria dragged on for a time after the preliminaries of 

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peace with Austria had been signed. Although certain 
representatives of these states had appeared at Nikolsburg 
and wished to be included in the negotiations for peace, 
Bismarck, preferring to deal with them separately, had 
denied their request. Early in August, however, their 
forces had been defeated and an armistice for the discussion 
of terms arranged. Bismarck had no intention of making 
the proposals onerous for them any more than he had for 
Austria. He was looking forward to the future when all 
Germany might have to stand together against a non- 
German enemy, and he did not desire to create at this time 
a legacy of bitterness which should prevent such alliance. 
Some little territory was taken from Bavaria and Hesse- 
Darmstadt in order to rectify the Prussian frontier, and 
relatively small indemnities were required. By October, 
peace terms had been arranged and signed with all of the 

Outside of the main end for which she had striven, that 
is, the removal of Austria from the affairs of Germany and 
the establishment of Prussia as the primary power in that 
area, Prussia had made material gains of enormous im« 
portance. She annexed to Prussian territory the two 
provinces of Schleswig and Holstein, the kingdom of Han- 
over and the duchies of Hesse-Cassel and Nassau, and the 
Free City of Frankfort. In all, she thus increased her 
population by about four and one half million. 

It is interesting to notice in concluding this chapter how 
complete was Bismarck's vindication in the eyes of the 
Prussian people by the result of the war. On September 
20, Ejng William and his victorious army made its triumphal 
entry into Berlin. In the pageant, just in front of the 
King, rode von Bismarck with von Moltke and von Roon. 
The wild enthusiasm of the Prussian people at the sight of 
Bismarck could hardly be restrained. In the joy and pride 
of victory, and in their realization of all which that victory 
meant for Prussia, th^ forgot the weary years of conflict. 

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the imconstitutional measures by which their army had 
been maintained against the wishes of their own representa- 
tives. The next elections showed unmistakably the trend 
of public feeling. The adherents of the government were 
greatly increased in numbers and, joining with seceders 
from other groups, gradually built up a National Liberal 
party which was the bulwark of the ministry in succeeding 
parliaments. When Bismarck, yielding to the constitu- 
tional principles at a time when he had become so popular 
that the budget controversy might have been closed in his 
favor without debate, requested from the parliament an 
indemnity for having carried on the government for four 
years without a budget, the chamber granted the request 
by a huge majority. His great personal triumph came a 
few weeks later when, he having retired to the country for 
a much-needed* rest, the parliament included him among 
the victorious generals to whom a donation was given, and, 
for his distinguished services to his country, voted him a 
large sum of money. With this sum the statesman bought 
himself a country ch&teau at Varzin, to which he became 
more and more devoted as th^ years went by. 

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Bismarck's haste in completing the peace negotiations 
with Austria was largely due to the fact that Napoleon had 
already begun to press for payment for French neutraUty 
during the war according to his und^erstanding of the Biar- 
ritz conversations. At the very time that Bismarck was 
concluding peace with the states of the old confederation. 
Napoleon was demanding the cession of the Bavarian Palat- 
inate, and of the Hessian districts west of the Rhine, to 
France. When this demand was peremptorily refused, 
and the French ambassador was shown that insistence 
upon any such claims would mean a conflict with united 
Germany, Napoleon was compelled to withdraw from his 
position, thus admitting his inability to enforce his wishes 
by war". A few weeks later the French Emperor returned 
to the quest with a demand that Prussia compensate France 
by aiding him to acquire Luxemburg and invade Belgium. 
The crafty Bismarck allowed him to formulate his demands 
openly and to put them into writing, and then declined to 
proceed further with these negotiations. Again Napoleon 
changed his ground, reducing his demands to include merely 
the occupation of Luxemburg. German patriotism, however, 
was inflamed at the prospect of transferring a territory 
with German subjects to French control, so that in March 
of 1867 this project was blocked. Prussia yielded only so 
far as to agree to a convention under the terms of which 
Prussian troops were to be withdrawn from Luxemburg, 


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the fortifications were to be dismantled, and its perpetual 
neutrality was to be guaranteed. Thus in his desire for 
"compensation" for his neutrality during the war of 1866, 
and in his expectations that France would emerge after, that 
war as the arbiter of the fortunes of western Europe, Napo- 
leon had been deceived and cruelly disappointed. 

B. napoleon's loss of influence in FRANCE 

Political conditions within France were, during this period, 
rapidly imperiling the prestige which the Emperor had 
gained through the earlier years of material prosperity. 
His absolutism had resulted in creating a strong Liberal 
opposition; his magnificent schemes for public works and 
for beautifying Paris and other great cities of France had 
so drawn upon the public treasury that able financiers were 
alarmed for the continued solvency of the country; his 
alliance with the Italian patriots had excited the vehement 
and fearless opposition of the Catholics, who saw the tem- 
poral domains of the Pope threatened. 

The sensational failure of his grandiose plans for a Mexican 
empire also played an important part in weakening his 
power and influence at this critical time. In 1861, foresee- 
ing the need of continued glory to enhance his success in 
his own country, he had conceived the idea of establishing 
in Mexico a new empire with his own nominee, Maximilian 
of Austria, as Emperor. In 1862 France, England, and 
Spain had been engaged in an expedition against Mexico 
to force that country to pay her debts to them, but England 
and Spain had soon withdrawn, leaving France to her own 
devices. Maximilian, at Napoleon's instigation, had ac- 
cepted the proffered throne, had gone to Mexico, and had 
found the greatest difficulty in maintaining any semblance 
of power against the Mexican patriots under Juarez in the 
north and under Diaz in the south. His expedition was 
maintained by French troops wholly and by French funds. 

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Just during the period of the Austro-Prussian war and the 
subsequent negotiations this Mexican expedition was cost- 
ing France fifteen million francs a month and was keeping 
forty thousand of the pick of the French army across the 
sea. A new difficulty arose when the United States, freed 
from the burden of the Civil War, protested against the 
French expedition in terms which required its withdrawal 
or war. By the end of 1866 Napoleon had come to realize 
that his cause was hopeless. After urging the Emperor 
Maximilian to withdraw, he ordered the return of the Ftench 
troops, the last contingent leaving February 5, 1867. Four 
months afterwards (June, 1867) the unfortunate Maximilian, 
who had proudly refused to withdraw from his empire and 
the few supporters he had won, was treacherously delivered 
over to Juarez and immediately shot. 

The momentous events in central Europe, also, had injured 
the prestige of the Emperor. The amour propre of the 
French people had been outraged. They began to ap- 
preciate the significance of what had taken place during 
the eventful year 1866. An hereditary enemy had been 
allowed by diplomacy and by war to increase her territories 
and to strengthen her position enormously while France 
submitted ineffectual demands and accepted rude rebuffs. 
"It was not Austria, but France, who was defeated at 
Sadowa," was a common saying throughout the country, 
a saying justified by the fact that the Prussia which had 
emerged from that battle now threatened the traditional 
importance of France in European politics. In 1867, when 
Bismarck was attending the famous Industrial Exposition 
at Paris, he called upon General Vaillant, Chief of the 
French General Staff. During conversation the French- 
man said: "I admire and love Prussia, and I admire and 
love you ; but we shall have to cross bayonets for all that." 
And when Bismarck, with feigned surprise, asked why, 
Vaillant answered : "We are both of us cocks, and cannot 
allow others to crow better than ourselves." Through all 

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circles the feeling grew that a war to the finish between 
Ftance and Prussia was inevitable. A distinct war party 
sought revanche for Sadowa. 

The Emperor, aging and rapidly failing in health, had a 
better understanding of the real international situation than 
his advisers or his people. He appreciated the strength of 
Prussia, as shown by the overwhelming defeat of Austria 
in a single battle ; he knew the military weakness of France ; 
he anticipated the united German opposition which a French 
attack would call into being. Knowing these elements 
in the situation, he sought to achieve by political and dip- 
lomatic means' the successes which his people demanded. 
Hence arose his repeated demands of Bismarck for terri- 
torial compensation, his repeated efforts to gain land, first 
on the west bank of the Rhine, then Luxemburg and Bel- 
gium, and finally Luxemburg alone. When he was thwarted 
in all these attempts, he turned to international politics to 
seek allies who would strengthen his position. He courted 
the favor of the Russian Czar, invited him to Paris during 
the exposition of 1867 and entertained him magnificently. 
Unfortimately for his purposes, in the midst of the festivi- 
ties a Pole attempted to assassinate the Czar, and, when 
tried before a French jury, received a verdict of "extenuat- 
ing circumstances." During the same year Napoleon at- 
tempted to come to an understanding with Francis Joseph 
of Austria : he visited Francis at Salzburg, arousing bitter 
comment among the south Germans; he received Francis 
at Paris ; but, in spite of some significant hints of a possible 
alliance, no definite terms could be agreed upon. 

Napoleon's position became more and more precarious. 
He attempted, indeed he was forced, to recoup some of his 
prestige by concessions in domestic politics. His opponents 
had become bolder with the successive failures of his foreign 
policies and more outspoken in their demands for reforms. 
In the spring of 1868 he allowed legislation extending free- 
dom of the press and of public meeting. The politicians 

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took advantage of the new privileges to publish dozens of 
republican papers to carry on an active propaganda against 
the government ; and the Socialists used the privileges to 
meet for discussions of economic questions, discussions 
which soon degenerated into debates on the imperial insti- 
tutions, religion, rights of property, and the* like. In the 
spring of 1869 the elections resulted in a marked increase 
of the opposition. On June 28 the Liberal party brought 
forward a demand for "the creation of a responsible ministry, 
and the recognition of the right of the Legislative Body to 
regulate the essential conditions of its own activity." The 
Liberals obtained a majority, and the Emperor had to yield 
his autocratic powers. On December 28 Emile OUivier 
was made prime minister and authorized to form "a homo- 
geneous cabinet, representative of the majority of the 
Legislative Body"; on January 2, 1870, the new ministry 
was formed and faced the serious political dissensions and 
general unrest throughout the country. 


In the meanwhile Bismarck had been busy consolidating 
the profits of the Austro-Prussian war. In addition to the 
territory annexed to Prussia, he had achieved two ends by 
the war : 1, the complete suppression of Austrian prestige 
in the German states ; and 2, the right to form a confedera- 
tion of the North German states. 

The South German states were left unattached as a result 
of the war : it was Bismarck's policy to bind them as closely 
as pK>ssible to Prussia. Bismarck would have liked to have 
included them in the new confederation, but was wise enough 
to recognize that at the moment this result could not be 
accomplished. He saw that it was advisable to wait for 
the inevitable union of the two parts of Germany until 
on the one hand the foreign powers were in no position to 
enforce their objections, and on the other the South German 

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States heartily desired to join the newly formed Confed- 
eration. At the moment Austria and France would both 
have objected, and might have found in their objections to 
any such imion a bond of alliance against Prussia. Further- 
more, the governments of Bavaria dnd WUrtemburg had 
no desire to restrict their sovereignty by entering the con- 
federation ; and among the people many elements lamented 
the exclusion of the German element in Austria from future 
participation in German aflfairs. Yet, in spite of these in- 
fluences against union at the moment, all these South Ger- 
man states realized that an understanding with Prussia and 
the new North German Confederation was their best safe- 
guard against the encroachments of Napoleon. Under 
these circumstances Bismarck was able to conclude with 
his late South German foes a secret mihtary defensive and 
offensive alUance. This alliance, when made known in 
1867, excited the utmost chagrin in Vienna. Count Beust, 
at this period Austrian Chancellor, wrote in his memoirs : 

"To call things by their true names, these treaties were a 
masterpiece of treachery. It has frequently happened that 
treaties were not kept, but that a treaty should be broken in an- 
ticipation was a novelty reserved for the genius of Count Bismarck. 
To sign treaties with the South German States, reducing them to a 
permanent condition of dependence on Prussia, and then to con- 
clude a few days later a treaty with Austria (Peace of Prague) 
stipulating for these states an independent international existence, 
— this was indeed the ne plus tdtra of Machiavellism." 

Although this alliance was, of course, for military purposes 
only, it served to emphasize the fundamental unity of inter- 
ests existing between the North and the South German 
States. A few months later a revision of the provisions of 
the Customs Union {the ZoUverein) resulted in the South 
German States expressing their willingness to rest the con- 
trol and direction of economic matters for all the German 
states in the legislature of the North German Confederation. 
The South German States sent their delegates to Berlin 

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for deliberation on the economic problems. Even though 
such deliberations were not political, it impressed the Ger- 
mans as a striking fact that representatives of all Germany 
were on these occasions seated in a single assembly. The 
political drift of such impressions is obvious. With mili- 
tary and economic union, political union seemed a near 
possibility. Bismiirck himself was changing rapidly: he 
was losing the narrow Prussianism, the Junker spirit, which 
had characterized him in his earlier years of diplomatic 
life, and was becoming Pan-German. 

The new confederation for the North German States — 
the North German Confederation — was formed with 
incredible speed. When the Prussian delegate withdrew 
from the Diet of Frankfort in June of 1866, and thus sig- 
nalized the outbreak of war, Bismarck had issued an invi- 
tation to the North German States to form a new confed- 
eration. Immediately after the agreement upon terms of 
peace he renewed his invitation, extending it to the German 
states north of the river Main. All accepted within a few 
weeks. Their delegates assembled in Berlin in December. 

Bismarck had a draft of a constitution ready for them. 
His general principle was to guarantee the independence of 
each state, to safeguard its territories against external 
aggression, and to permit local self-government within the 
component states under their accustomed, forms. He 
believed that the strength and endurance of the new con- 
federation would depend wholly upon the goodwill of the 
various members. For legislative purposes his draft pro- 
vided for a Reichsiagy or lower chamber, whose members 
were elected by nwinhood suffrage, and a BundesratK or 
upper chamber, whose members were delegates from the 
sovereigns of the separate states. The King of Prussia 
became head of the new confederation, and his chancellor 
presided in the Bundesrath. The military system through- 
out all of the states was to be modeled upon the Prussian 
system, and Prussia was to have the chief command in peace 

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or in war. Bismarck encouraged speed in the deliberations 
of the delegates: "Gentlemen," he said, "let us work 
quickly, let us put Germany in the saddle ; it will soon 
learn to ride." On the 2d of February, 1867, the delegates 
accepted, after considerable wrangling but with little mate- 
rial alterations, Bismarck's draft. Bismarck felt, he said, 
like Hotspur when, "breathless and faint" after battle he 
was "pestered with a popinjay" of a too fastidious lord. 
Ten days later a constituent Reichstag was elected to delib- 
erate upon the constitution. *0n April 16, 1867, this Reichs- 
tag passed the constitution by a vote of 230 to 53. Within 
a few months the Diets in each of the several states formally 
adopted it. On July 1 it definitely went into effect. Thus 
in six months from the time the delegates first assembled, 
the constitution was actually in force. 

It is significant of Bismarck's temper and foresight thiat 
immediately after the North German Confederation came 
into being he exerted every effort to bring the military 
systems in the different states up to the level of the Prussian 
system. Additional levies were quickly recruited, Prussian 
drill methods used, and the general level of eflSciency in the 
armies raised. These efforts were redoubled after 1868, 
for Bismarck, always an adept at reading the political 
horoscope, became convinced that Napoleon would sooner 
or later be forced into a war with Prussia in his attempt 
to regain his prestige. Shortly afterwards, foreseeing the 
tremendous impetus that would be given thereby to the 
unification of Germany, he began to welcome the thought 
of such a war. Of his recollections of that period he wrote : 

" I took it as assured that war with Frarice would necessarily 
have to be waged on the road to our further national development, 
for our development at home as well as the extension beyond the 
Main, and that we must keep this eventuality in sight in all our 
domestic as well as in our foreign relations. ... I did not doubt 
that a Franco-German war must take place before the construc- 
tion of a United Germany could be realized. I was at that time 
preoccupied with the idea of delaying the outbreak of this war 

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until our fighting strength should be increased by the application 
of the Prussian military legislation not only to Hanover, Hesse, 
and Holstein, but as I could hope even at that time from the ob- 
servation I had made, to the South Grermans." 

D. bismarck!s diplomatic preparations for the 



i. Austria 

The situation required, as it did before the Austro-Prussian 
war, a careful estimate of conditions throughout Europe, a 
reckoning of possible friends and foes. 

Naturally, Austria would seem at first tliought a possible 
ally of France. She had been Prussia's recent enemy; 
and the young Austrian Emperor when on a visit to Napo- 
leon in 1867 had significantly hinted at the possibility of an 
Austro-French alliance. Austrian domestic troubles had 
been partially settled in the years following the Austro- 
Prussian war. At the outbreak of that war, it will be remem- 
bered, Francis Joseph, having suspended the previous sys- 
tem of government, was receiving the programs formulated 
by Magyars, Czechs, Slavs, and Poles for their respective 
areas. Of these programs the only one that needed im- 
mediate serious attention was that of the Hungarians 
(Ma^ars), since the greatest part of the unrest in the 
country and the failure of the government could be traced ^ 
to the opposition of the Hungarians. During the war, 
of course, all domestic issues had been laid aside : after the 
war, the Emperor Francis Joseph showed the most con- 
ciliatory spirit. In a message sent to the diets throughout 
the empire February 18, 1867, he said : 

"During a long course of years the constitutional organization 
of the monarchy has suffered from hitherto inseparable contra- 
dictions between the older rights of the Hungarian constitution 
and the liberal institutions which the Emperor has made it the 
aim of his life to establish throughout the monarchy. During 

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the continuance of this conflict the restoration of the greatness 
of the Empire and of the historical position it has so long occupied 
among the other states of Europe is not to be hoped for, and, 
owing to the relations which have arisen out of the recent 
calamities, every new delay that occurs in the settlement of pend- 
ing questions is fraught with the most decided disadvantages.'* 

He then summoned De&k secretly to Vienna and asked him 
to formulate Hungary's demands. Fortunately, De&k 
was able to assure the Emperor that Hungary demanded 
* * only what she demanded before Sadowa. " As Austria was 
at this time in no position to resist, Francis Joseph appre- 
ciated the moderation of the Magyar leaders in not using 
Austria's dire need to increase their demands. Negotia- 
tions proceeded rapidly. By the close of the year 1867 the 
famous Compromise (Aiisgleich) was completed. By its 
provisions a dual monarchy, the Austro-Hungarian mon-- 
archy, was created, consisting of two powers of equal rank 
having the same reigning dynasty. Each power was to have 
its own parliament, its own ministry, and its own administra- 
tive system ; each was to be entirely independent of the other 
in all internal affairs. Yet in external affairs and in certain 
joint activities, it was necessary to have the machinery 
for common action: it was therefore provided that there 
should be a ministry of three departments — Foreign af- 
fairs. War, and Finance — which should act for both coun- 
tries as one. Questions of tariff and currency were to be 
regulated by ten-year agreements between the two countries 
— a most unsatisfactory arrangement, for each renewal 
period has brought a struggle between the two powers over 
the details of the compact. For Hungary, this Ausgleich 
was a great triumph : she gained the independence for 
which she had struggled so long and so bitterly. 

But the solution of the Hungarian problem immediately 
raised a problem of the same nature in a different part of 
the empire. The Czechs of Bohemia, inspired by Hungary's 
success, issued a declaration that Bohemia had the same 

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traditional rights as Hungary and that her relations with 
the monarchy should be adjusted by special agreement 
between Francis Joseph and a Bohemian Diet chosen by a 
just and equal suffrage. They then proceeded to adopt 
the tactics which, as they thought, had gained the victory 
for Hungary : they withdrew from the Bohemian Diet ; 
they refused to appear in the Reichsrath ; they organized 
a passive resistance to^all acts of Austria and showed them- 
selves proud and hostile toward Austrian efforts at con- 
ciliation. Such was the situation in 1870. 

To summarize briefly the domestic situation as it af- 
fected Austrian policy during the impending Franco- 
Prussian war : (1) by the terms of the Compromise, Hun- 
gary had been acknowledged as an equal independent 
sovereign power acting jointly with Austria in foreign 
affairs and in defence, and Hungarian influence was cast 
decisively against alliance with France and against partici- 
pation in the war; (2) Bohemia was carrying through a 
passive revolution against Austrian authority, on which 
successive Austrian ministries broke and fell, and Austria 
feared that if she warred with France against Prussia the 
discontented Bohemians might yield up the Austrian 
frontiers to her enemies; and (3) Austrian finances were 
not yet satisfactory and Austrian military reorganization 
not yet completed. 

Not only did the domestic situation influence Austria 
to be neutral, but certain features in the foreign situation 
also played a part. Austria understood that she had for- 
feited, by her protest against Russia's suppression of the 
Polish rebellion in 1863, the favor of Russia. Her diplomats 
were shrewd enough to see that Bismarck had cherished the 
friendship he had established between Russia and Prussia 
at that time. There was real danger, therefore, that, should 
Austria ally herself with France, Russia would attack her 
from the east, and, perhaps, wrest away her Polish provinces. 
Furthermore, Italy on the southwest had appreciated 

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Prussia's aid in gaining Venice and was now casting covetous 
eyes on Italia irredenta (Italy unreclaimed) in the Trentino 
and Trieste. Should Austria enter the war, Italy might 
well ally herself again with Prussia and pour troops against 
Austria from the new Venetian strongholds. 

We may be sure that Bismarck, the shrewdest and best- 
informed statesman at that time in Europe, appreciated to 
the full the Austrian situation. Though he was not, of 
course, in a position to make much of the domestic diffi- 
culties of Austria, he managed to emphasize to the utmost 
the Russian menace and the friendship between Prussia 
and Italy. 

ii. Great Britain 

Although the entrance of Great Britain into the war 
would have tipped the balance decisively, both powers 
felt that England was too much concerned with her domestic 
policies to interfere in a continental war. Lord Palmerston 
died in the autumn of 1865 and Earl Russell (the Lord John 
Russell who had in March, 1831, introduced the first reform 
bill) succeeded him as the prime minister. Earl Russell, 
with a good Liberal majority in the Parliament, inmiediately 
pressed for an extension of the electoral franchise, and 
Gladstone, leader of the party in the House of Commons, 
seconded his efforts with the utmost enthusiasm. In 1866 
Gladstone introduced the new Reform Bill into the Com- 
mons. The measure was bitterly attacked, the ministry 
defeated and forced to resign, and the Conservatives placed 
in power under the leadership of Lord Derby, with Ben- 
jamin Disraeli as the Conservative head on the floor of the 
House of Commons. Two years later (February, 1868), 
Lord Derby was forced on account of ill health to resign, 
and Disraeli was summoned by the queen to the head of 
the ministry. 

The next fifteen years of British history revolve about 
the rival careers of Disraeli and Gladstone. At this time 

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Disraeli, the conservative leader, was a man of sixty-three, 
his rival was five years younger. The two men were wholly 
dissimilar. Benjamin Disraeli was the descendant of an 
expatriated Portuguese Jew. His father renounced Judaism 
when BenjanoLin Disraeli was a child, but the physical 
features and the name of both father and son marked them 
through life as beings apart from th^ ordinary Englishman. 
Of regular education Disraeli had little : he browsed in his 
father's library and sought to educate himself along his own 
ideas. At seventeen he entered a solicitor's office as clerk, 
at twenty he began his preparations for the bar, at twenty- 
one he had by his writings brought himself to the attention 
of Murray, the great publisher, and at twenty-two he 
published a novel, "Vivian Grey," which took the contem- 
porary reading world by storm. Benjamin Disraeli became 
one of the literary lions of the day and focused attention 
on himself by the most daring eccentricities of dress, manners, 
and expression. One who knows Disraeli's career always 
thinks at once of the original fopperies which characterized 
his early appearance in society — perfumery, lace, jeweled 
satin shirt-front, a profusion of expensive rings outside his 
gloves, a turn for- epigram and irony, cool effrontery under 
trying circumstances. "He wore green velvet trousers," 
writes Sir Henry Bulwer of Disraeh's appearance at one 
dinner party, "a canary-coloured waistcoat, low shoes, 
silver buckles, lace at his wrists, and his hair in ringlets. . . . 
Yet if on leaving the table we had been severally taken 
aside and asked which was the cleverest of the party, we 
should have been obliged to say *The man in the green 
velvet trousers.'" He first entered Parliament in 1837,^ 
but did not in his early appearance make a success. In 
1839 he married an heiress fifteen years older than he, with 
whom he lived in the most ideal harmony and sympathy 
until her death. His parliamentary opportunity came 
with his attack on Peel in the years following 1845. He 
distinguished himself by the brilliancy of his speeches and 

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marked himself as the Conservative leader. He overcame 
all the racial and social prejudices of his Conservative con- 
temporaries by the sheer supremacy of his intellect. He 
was attacked as a Jew adventurer and accused of posing as 
a man of mystery; his peculiarities of dress and manner 
were ridiculed; every effort was made by the hidebound 
Conservatives to shake him off and get rid of him, but in 
their need they had to resort each time to his brilliancy to 
save them. In the three years after 1848 he was the Con- 
servative leader on the floor of the House of Commons and 
did much to reconstruct his party. In 1852 his firsb notable 
political reward came in the shape of the chancellorship 
of the exchequer in Lord Derby's Cabinet. In 1868 he 
was again finance minister under Derby, and in 1866 he 
was naturally in the same position in Lord Derby's third 
ministry, to succeed in 1868 to the premiership when his 
chief was forced by ill health to retire. 

William Ewart Gladstone was the son of John Gladstone, 
a grain merchant of Liverpool, and descended from Scotch 
ancestry. He had a regular academic training — Eton and 
Oxford — and topped it off with six months of foreign travel. 
He was elected for one of the Rotten Boroughs in 1832, 
and made an immediate success in his speeches. He be- 
came one of the faithful workers in the Parliament, conspicu- 
ous not by his brilliancy or by his oddity, but by the thorough- 
ness and care with which he mastered the details of any 
problem set for him to solve. His first tilt with Disraeli came 
when the latter was chancellor of the exchequer in 1852-1853. 
Disraeli was defending his budget. With characteristic 
audacity he attacked his opponents with all his wonderful 
powers of irony, taunts, and cutting epigram. Gladstone 
in wrath rose to reply : he called the chancellor of the ex- 
chequer to book for his unbridled language, his lack of 
respect for decency and propriety, and pitilessly dissected 
the budget and showed its impracticability. As the two 
men faced each other in that first encoimter the contrast 

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in their characters was evident: the one brilliant, im- 
aginative, clever and unscrupulous in debate, unconven- 
tional in language and appearance; the other a typical 
Englishman, a fine speechmaker but no master of satire 
and epigram, a sound thinker but not gifted with wide 
imaginative vision, careful and logical in debate, and strictly 
conventional in language and appearance. The duel that 
began at this time lasted as long as Disraeli lived. On 
this special occasion Disraeli was beaten^ Lord Derby 
resigned, and Gladstone became chancellor of the exchequer 
in the new cabinet. In this office he built up a reputation 
as England's greatest finance minister; he made himself 
indispensable. During all but a few months of the time 
from 1853 to 1865 Gladstone remained at this office, becom- 
ing finally, upon the retirement of Lord Russell from active 
politics in 1867 acknowledged head of the Liberal party. 

The Conservative party took warning from the popular 
demonstrations in 1866 attending the defeat of the reform 
bill and hastily submitted in 1867 a bill of their own. In 
its final form this bill created practically a "household 
franchise,** i.e, gave the vote to every householder. The 
Conservatives recoiled from their own work: Thomas 
Carlyle said that the passage of the Bill was equivalent 
to "shooting Niagara"; and the prime minister, Lord 
Derby, confessed that "he was taking'a leap in the dark." 

After Lord Derby's retirement, Disraeli was unable to 
keep the ministry in power. Over questions arising in con- 
nection with Ireland he faced the prospect of defeat by the 
aggressive Liberals under Gladstone's leadership. Parlia- 
ment was therefore dissolved in 1868 and the country called 
upon to decide the nature of the government by its votes. 
In this election (1868) the Liberals received an enormous 
majority. Disraeli resigned and Gladstone became prime 

During these years both Disraeli and Gladstone had 
been too engrossed in domestic politics to pay much atten- 

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tion to the course of events on the continent of Europe. 
The victory of Prussia at Sadowa, the consolidation of the 
states of North Germany into a confederation, the growing 
dissatisfaction of the French with the settlement of terri- 
tory after Sadowa — these things made comparatively 
little impression in Great Britain. The whole nation was 
becoming self -centered and introspective : few had the 
vision to see how these central European changes could 
ever aflfect Great Britain. 

Both Bismarck and Napoleon understood Great Britain's 
non-intervention policy and did not expect her to interfere. 
Bismarck, however, at the outbreak of the war, took a 
decisive step to prevent any last possibility of her interven- 
tion on the side of France. He recognized that in British 
eyes the neutrality of Belgium was most desirable. He 
had retained in his possession, since the negotiations fol- 
lowing the Austro-Prussian war. Napoleon's proposals that 
Prussia should help France acquire Belgium in return for 
France's benevolent neutrality. These proposals Bismarck 
caused to be published in the London Times. The greatest ex- 
citement was aroused in Great Britain : any danger of English 
intervention upon the side of France was at a stroke removed. 
The English negotiated with each of the belligerent nations 
a treaty by the provisions of which each was bound with 
Great Britain's help to oppose any violation of Belgian 

iii. Italy 

To one other country Napoleon might look for support 
^- Italy. As a result of her joint action with Prussia 
during the Austro-Prussian war of 1866, Italy had gained 
Venice, but her army had been overwhelmingly defeated at 
Custozza and her navy at Lissa, so that the war had yielded 
her no glory. A period of moral depression followed. The 
government was deeply in debt and saw no way for relief ; 
the pillaging and marauding in central Italy continued ; 
Rome was still in possession of the Pope; and no leader 

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arose who had the ability to deliver the unhappy countfy 
from its diflSculties. Napoleon, however, although realizing 
that Italy could be of little real value to him as an ally, 
did approach her with the object of forming an alliance. 
King Victor Emmanuel felt the impulse of generosity 
toward his ally of 1859, who had helped him gain the first 
decision against Austria, but the letters and negotiations 
between the two monarchs were couched in vague and 
general terms. As a preliminary to any discussion, the 
Italian government demanded the withdrawal of French 
troops from Rome, but Napoleon was forced by the Catholic 
influences in France to withhold his consent to this demand. 
Then, just as the crisis became perceptibly acute, Napoleon 
alienated irrevocably Italian sympathies by forcibly de- 
fending the Pope in his possession of Rome. With French 
troops opposing by force of arms the patriots' advance 
upon Rome, all possibility of an Italian-French alliance 

iv. Other States in Europe 

Throughout the rest of Europe Bismarck believed that 
France might search in vain for allies. Denmark, though 
having fought Prussia in 1864 a^d though hungering for 
Schleswig and Holstein, realized that a mistake at this 
moment might easily mean her ruin and incorporation into 
Prussia, so that she was unwilling to commit herself to the 
French cause. Russia so openly sympathized with Prussia 
because of Prussia's aid in the Polish rebellion of 1863 that 
Bismarck could actually count on her to threaten Austria, 
if Austria showed any signs of intervention. Sweden 
and Spain had sunk back into second-rate powers and were 
outside of the circle of interested nations. 


Although the statesmen in both nations perceived the 
dangerous drift of popular sentiment, the actual outbreak 

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of war came with dramatic suddemiess. Bismarck manipu- 
lated events in 1870 with consummate skill and audacity 
to put France in the wrong before all Grermany and thus 
unite popular opinion in both North German and the South 
German states against the enemy. The issue was over a 
Ijelatively trifling matter. The throne of Spain, which 
was at the time vacant, was offered to Prince Leopold of 
the Hohenzollem family with the consent of the Prussian 
King. Prance was notified officially of Leopold's candidacy 
July 2. Four days later the French ministry, fearing for 
Prussian influence in Spain and at the same time seeking a 
great diplomatic victory, framed an arrogant note demand- 
ing Leopold's withdrawal as a candidate. To Bismarck this 
demand was Prussia's opportunity, but the King did not 
seek war and, realizing the state of popular feeling in France, 
caused Leopold's name to be withdrawn on July 10. Bis- 
marck was intensely disappointed ; he even considered hand- 
ing in his resignation. In later years he wrote of his 
feelings at the time : 

"My first idea was to retire from the service, because, after all 
the insolent challenges which had gone before, I perceived in this 
extorted submission a humiliation of Germany for which I did not 
desire to be responsible. This impression of a wound to our sense 
of national honor by the compulsory withdrawal so dominated 
me that I had already decided to announce my retirement at Ems. 
I considered this humiliation before France and her swaggering 
demonstrations as worse than that of Olmtitz, for which the pre- 
vious history on both sides, and our want of preparation for war 
at the time, will always be a valid excuse. ... In the same sense 
I conversed with the minister of war, von Roon : we had got the 
slap in the face from France, and had been reduced, by our com- 
plaisance, to look like seekers of a quarrel if we entered upon war, 
the only way in which we could wipe away the stain," 

Then the French government, under the inspiration of the 
court leaders and the war party, committed the fatal error 
on July 12 of making an additional demand that Leopold's 
candidacy should never in the future be renewed. Such a 

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demand was in itself of the nature of an insult. The ICing, 
who was then at the village of Ems, rejected it and sent a 
telegram to Bismarck, stating what he had done and au- 
thorizing Bismarck to make the news public. This telegram 
reached Bismarck as he was dining with von Boon and 
von Moltke in Berlin. Bismarck himself has described 
the scene and his action : 

"Having decided to resign, in spite of the remonstrances which 
Roon made against it, I invited him and Moltke to dine with me 
alone on the 13th, and communicated to them at table my views 
and projects for doing so. Both were greatly depressed, and 
reproached me indirectly with selfishly availing myself of my 
greater facility for withdrawing from service. I maintained the 
position that I could not offer up my sense of honor to politics, 
that both of them, being professional soldiers and consequently 
without freedom of choice, need not take the same point of view 
as a responsible Foreign Minister. During the conversation I was 
informed that a telegram from Ems, in cipher, if I recollect rightly, 
of about 200 'groups,' was being deciphered. When the copy 
was handed to me it showed that Abeken had drawn up and signed 
the telegram at his Majesty's command, and I read it out to my 
guests, whose dejection was so great that they turned away from 
food and drink. On a repeated examination of the document- 
I lingered upon the authorization of his Majesty, which included 
a command, immediately to communicate Benedetti's fresh de- 
mand and its rejection both to our ambassadors and to the press. 
I put a few questions to Moltke as to the extent of his confidence 
in the state of our preparations, especially as to the time they 
would still require in order to meet this sudden risk of war. He 
answered that if there was to be a war he expected no advantage 
to us by deferring its outbreak; and even if we should not be 
strong enough at first to protect all the territories on the left 
bank of the Rhine against French invasion, our preparations 
would nevertheless soon overtake those of the French, while 
at a later period this advantage would be diminished; he 
regarded a rapid outbreak as, on the whole, more favorable 
to us than delay. . . . 

" Under this conviction I made use of the royal authorization 
communicated to me through Abeken, to publish the contents 
of the telegram ; and in the presence of my two guests I reduced 
the telegram by striking out words, but without adding or altering, 

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^o the following form.^ 'After the news of the renunciation of 
the hereditary Prince of HohenzoUern had been officially com- 
municated to the imperial government of France by the royal 
government of Spain, the French ambassador at Ems made the 
further demand to his Majesty the King that he would authorize 
him to telegraph to Paris that his Majesty the £jng bound him- 
self for all future time never again to give his consent if the Hohen- 
zoUems should renew their candidature. His Majesty the King 
thereupon decided not to receive the French ambassador again, 
and sent to tell him through the aide-de-camp on duty that his 

vMajesty had nothing further to communicate to the ambassador.' 
xhe difference in the effect of the abbreviated text of the Ems 
telegram as compared with that produced by the original was not 
the result of stronger words but of the form, which made this an- 
nouncement appear decisive, while Abeken's version would only 
have been regarded as a fragment of a negotiation still pending, 
and to be continued at BerUn. 

" After I had read out the concentrated edition to my two guests, 
Moltke remarked : *Nowit has a different ring: it sounded before 
like a parley ; iiow it is like a flourish in answer to a challenge.' 
I went on to explain : *If in execution of his Majesty's order I at 
once communicate this text, which contains no alteration in or 
addition to the telegram, not only to the newspapers, but also by 
telegraph, to all our embassies, it will be known in Paris before 
-midnight, and not only on account of its contents, but also on ac- 
count of the manner of its distribution, will have the effect of a 
red rag upon the Gallic bull. Fight we must if we do not want to 
act the part of the vanquished without a battle. Success, however, 
essentially depends upon the impression which the origination of 

* The original telegram as sent by Abeken was in substance as follows : 
"His Majesty writes to me : 'Count Benedetti spoke to me on the promenade, 
in order to demand from me, finally in a very importunate manner, tluit I should 
authorize him to telegraph at once that I bound myself for all future time never again 
to give my consent if the HohenzoUerns should renew their candidature. I refused 
at last somewhat sternly, as it is neither right nor possible to undertake engage- 
ments of this kind d tout jamais. Natiu^lly I told him that I had as yet received 
no news, and as he was earlier informed about Paris and Madrid than myself, he 
could clearly see that my government once more had no hand in the matter.* 
His Majesty has since received a letter from the Prince. His Majesty having told 
Count Benedetti that he was awaiting news from the Prince, has decided, with 
reference to the above demand, upon the representation of Count Eulenburg and 
myself, not to receive Count Benedetti again, but only to let him be informed 
through an aide-de-camp : That His Majesty had now received from the Prince 
confirmation of the news which Benedetti had already received from Paris, and had 
nothing further to say to the ambassador. His Majesty leaves it to your Excellency 
whether Benedetti's fresh demand and its rejection should not be at onoe communi- 
cated to our ambassadors and to the press." 

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the war makes upon us and others ; it is important that we should 
be the party attacked, and this Gallic overweening and touchiness 
will make us if we announce in the face of Europe, so far as we can 
without the speaking-tube of the Reichstag, that we fearlessly 
meet the public thi-eats of France.' 

" This explanation brought about in the two generals a revulsion 
to a more joyous mood, the liveliness of which surprised me. They 
had suddenly recovered their pleasure in eating and drinking and 
spoke in a more cheerful vein. Roon said : *Our God of old lives 
still arid will not let us perish in disgrace.' Moltke so far re- 
linquished his passive equanimity that, glancing up joyously 
towards the ceiling and abandoning his usual punctiliousness of 
speech, he smote his hand upon his breast and said: 'If I may 
but live to lead our armies in such a war, then the devil may come 
directly afterwards and fetch away the "old carcass.'". He was 
less robust at that time than afterwards, and doubted whether 
he would survive the hardships of the campaign." 

This alteration in the phrasing had given to the French 
nation the impression that their ambassador had been dis- 
tinctly snubbed. Popular feeling in France could not then 
be controlled. On the evening of July 14, Napoleon III 
with his council of state decided upon war. On the 15th 
mobilization orders were issued to the French forces and 
on the evening of the same day to the Prussian army. The 
formal declaration of war was received in Berlin July 19. 

The North German Confederation rose to a man to the 
support of Prussia. The Reichstag voted a large loan for 
mobilization. In the South German states the pan-German 
sentiment was aroused by the insolence of the French 
demands. Even the dullest statesman saw that these states 
would lose their coveted independence if Fran.ce were allowed 
to subdue Prussia. The decision was quickly taken. In 
Bavaria, Wttrtemberg, and Baden the necessary appro- 
priations were voted immediately. Napoleon confronted 
a united Germany at the very outbreak of the war. 

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Out of each succeeding struggle of the nations, with the 
disaster and humiliation which overtake one or the other, 
with the economic crippling and the frightful loss of life, 
comes at least one new lesson for the world to learn in the 
grave business of maintaining states. The Franco-German 
war pointed out for all who would take the pains to notice 
that war had ceased to be the work of paid adventiu-ers 
or professional soldiers who fought in the pay of a king or 
government, but had become instead a stern duty of all 
the citizens of the country involved, a duty not to be dele- 
gated to hirelings but performed in the spirit of self-sacrifice 
for the sake of the nation. One by one the states of the 
world have made a tardy recognition of the lesson. That 
Prussia had already known this truth and had profited by 
it in the organization of her armies was the most weighty 
reason for her speedy success over the armies of France 
in 1870. There was no lack of patriotism amongst the 
French ; there was no decay in the physical or moral fiber 
of the individual Frenchmen; but they were not lessoned 
in the grim business which they accepted as Napoleon's 
premier phrased it "with a light heart." Instead, there 
was the disastrous necessity of learning in the face of the 
rifles of men who had been long schooled in this essential 
duty to their country. 

The German army evolved by Scharnhorst has already 
been described, but a few details might well be added. At 
the time of the Franco-German war, from the young men 


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arriving at the age <tf twenty, there were chosen every year 
100,000 to form the standing army, where they served for 
three years. This number formed but a small part of citi- 
zens reaching miUtary age, but the essential feature of the 
system was that service was compulsory and that any one 
might be chosen. Following the service in the standing 
army came a second period of four years in the Reserve 
and a third of five years in the Landwehr — in all twelve 
years, during some part of which the individual received 
military training. In addition to these men so trained, 
the government reserved the right to call to the colors in 
time of war any able-bodied man from the age of seventeen 
to that of forty-two. A careful registration was made to 
accoimt for every man who had seen service, equipment 
and clothing were kept ready for his use, and orders were 
issued informing him in detail of his duty when the call for 
mobilization was issued. The same painstaking care had 
arranged in time of peace for the mustering of animals, the 
collecting of food and other supplies, the formation of 
trains — aU to such effect that within a fortnight after the 
formal declaration of hostilities, the North German Con- 
federation mobilized an army of over a million men and 
concentrated a full half of them on the Rhine frontier. It 
was a feat unique in military history. 

Across the Rhine a system of conscription prevailed. 
Alarmed by the Prussian success of 1866, the French', in 
1868, had passed a new recruiting law whereby members 
of the standing armies enlisted for five years and later formed 
a Reserve for four years. Military service in France was 
at first avoidable by payment, and in later years by substitu- 
tion. But this law had not had time to prove its value. 
Trained reserves were few and a complete organization had 
not been worked out for them. The depots which furnished 
the arms and equipment were large and few in number, so 
that crowding and confusion in a time of hurry were unavoid- 
able. There were many cases where members of the re- 

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serves had to travel completely across France to draw their 
equipment only to return over the same route to join their 
regiments perhaps only a few miles from their homes. In 
the standing army, organization into the higher tactical 
units was rare, and maneuvers were infrequent, so that 
neither general nor staflF oflScers had had that training which 
is so essential to the proper performance ol their functions. 
Against Germany's well-trained million, France could put 
into the field only 567,000. From these must be subtracted 
the Algerian troops, and those at depots and garrisons. 
The remainder was 330,000 men. 

A comparison of the armament of the two nations shows 
that whereas France's infantry carried the superior weapon, 
Germany's artillery was equipped with a more effective 
field piece. The needle-gun which had performed service 
for Prussia in two previous wars was markedly inferior to 
the Chassepdt of the French in range, in rapidity of fire, 
and in striking power. The former was sighted to 600 
meters, the latter to 1200. To offset this French advantage, 
the German artillery was armed with steel breech-loading 
guns firing percussion shells of nine and twelve pounds. 
The French arm was composed of guns of equal caliber, 
but of the old muzzle-loading type. In addition, the French 
army placed great confidence in the forenmner of the 
modern machine gun, the mitrailleuse, which, though upon 
occasion it did great execution, generally failed to meet the 
expectations of the French, particularly when it was arrayed 
against the German field guns. 

As we look back at the swift disaster which overtook France, 
it is hard to believe that no idea of their military inferiority 
ever entered the minds of her people. Her officers of high 
rank must have had reports from Germany which told 
them plainly that in everything which pertains to war 
they were hopelessly behind their enemy, and her Emperor 
certainly knew enough of the political situation to be sure 
that the south German states would join the Northern 

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Confederation against France, yet neither the one party 
nor the other gave any intimation of the true state of affairs 
to the population of the country at large. On the contrary, 
the generals gave out that the army was in a state of com- 
plete readiness, and the Emperor himself outlined an inva- 
sion of Germany which involved the neutrality, or rather 
the inactivity, of Bavaria, Wlirtemburg, and Baden. No 
doubt existed in Paris that the war would have a speedy 
ending. Everywhere was heard the cry "On to Berlin!" 

To satisfy the popular demand, activities w^ere begun at 
once. Seven army corps, totaling 210,000 men, were rushed 
to the frontier before the mobilization was complete. Staffs 
had to be formed and skeleton organizations filled in after 
the troops had reached their station. Indeed, the French 
army may be said to have mobilized on the frontier. In 
marked contrast was the German procediu-e. Each corps 
was mobilized in its own district and sent to the frontier 
as a unit, complete in men, animals, and equipment. 

The French Army was divided into two wings: the left, 
composed of the 2d, 3d, 4th, 5th, Guard, and 6th (in reserve) 
Corps, nimibering 163,000 men, was commanded by the 
Emperor in person ; the right, consisting of the 1st and 7th 
Corps, numbering 47,000 men, was commanded by Marshal 
MacMahon. These two armies were later added to until 
in the early days of August they totaled 270,000 men. 
Their artillery numbered 925 guns. The Emperor's head- 
quarters was at St. Avoid in Lorraine, MacMahon's across 
the Vosges Mountains at Hagenau, in Alsace. The whole 
army was dispersed irregularly along the frontier from Thion- 
ville to Strassburg. Within a few days the impossibility 
of an aggressive movement became patent to those in com- 
mand, and the idea of an invasion of Germany was replaced 
by that of moving the armies along the border in the hope 
of finding an ideal defensive position. It was the same error 
which the A.ustrians committed before KoniggrStz — the 
error of supposing that they could surrender the initiative 

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without an effort and yet hope to choose the place of the 
deciding contest. 

In response to the restless feeling in Paris, a reconnais- 
sance in force was ordered toward SaarbrUck, where the 
French, greatly superior in numbers, were successful. They 
were able to take the town, but the victory was of no value 
to them because in the face of the German armies they 
could not cross the Saar. Von Moltke in commenting on 
the action saj^s : "France was waiting for a victory ; some- 
thing had to be done to appease public impatience, so, in 
order to do something, the enemy resolved (as is usual 
under such circumstances) on a hostile reconnaissance, 
and it may be added, with the usual result.'* The French 
had struck in the air without accomplishing any result. 
They had, indeed, launched their only strictly aggressive 
move of the war. Thereafter the French were concerned 
not with attacking the enemy's country but with defending 
their own. 

Meanwhile, the Germans mobilized and concentrated 
on the frontier with but little fear of the French invasion. 
They knew that should the Emperor lead his troops across 
the Rhine into South Germany, they would be on his flank 
and in a position to strike a dangerous blow at his armies. 
They did fear a vigorous aggressive against their own armies, 
but it was a feeling 'that soon passed when they learned of 
the haphazard way in which France was mobilizing. The 
Germans were organized into three armies : the First, 
under General von Steinmetz, consisting of the 1st, 7th, and 
8th Corps, numbering 85,000 men ; the Second, under Prince 
Frederick Charles, composed of the 2d, 8d, 4th, 9th, 10th, 
Guard, and 12th Corps, numbering 210,000 men ; and the 
Third, under the Crown Prince Frederick of Prussia, con- 
stituted of the 5th, 6th, and 11th Corps, the 1st and 2q 
Bavarian Corps, and the Wtirtemburg and Baden divisions, 
numbering 180,000 men. Thus against France's 270,000 
men and 925 guns were arrayed the German armies of 

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475^000 and 1584 guns. The First army concentrated on 
the German right with the Second on its left : they were to 
invade Lorraine. The Third army was on the left of the 
line : it was to invade Alsace. 

* The German plan contemplated as its general objective 
the city of Paris, but because two French armies lay between 
him and the French capital, von Moltke did not look beyond 
his first meeting with those armies. He knew that the cap- 
ture of Paris, while it would give him an immense moral 
victory, would not aflfect the outcome of the war. France's 
real strength was in her armies. To crush those armies 
was to paralyze France's resistance and leave the way open 
to Paris. Von Moltke's special objective, therefore, was 
the army of the Emperor. He knew of the division into 
two commands, one in Lorraine, the other in Alsace, and 
arranged his own forces accordingly. The First army on 
the right, and the Second on its immediate left, were to op- 
pose Napoleon in Lorraine ; the Third army was to operate 
against MacMahon across the Vosges in Alsace. The 
orders to all were the same : first defeat the army in front 
of you, then march on Paris. Viewed thus without the 
details of the campaign, the plan seems simple. It was 
simple, but it was successful. The Third army defeated 
MacMahon at Worth; the First and Second defeated 
Napoleon's armies about Metz ; portions of all three united 
to crush MacMahon at Sedan; and the victors of Sedan 
marched on Paris. 

Because the Third army's task of passing through the 
Vosges Mountains would retard it, and because its route 
to Paris was the longest, it was put in motion first, on the 
4th of August, 1870. Two days later it encountered Mac- 
Mahon's forces in the first of the great battles of the war, 
that of Worth. The French First Corps under MacMahon 
occupied the heights on the right bank of the Sauer River. 
Against it before the day was ended was hurled practically 
aU of the 8d German Army. MacMahon attempted to 

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peenforce by ordering divisions from the 5th and 7th Corps, 
but only one division arrived in time to assist in the battle. 
At nightfall the defeated Frehch retired in confusion upon 
Lun6ville, leaving the passes of the Vosges Mountains 
.unguarded, and, except for the fortified .towns, abandoning 
the province of Alsace to the enemy. 

On the same day the advancing 1st and 2d German 
armies encountered the 2d French Corps at Spicheren and 
in a prolonged action defeated it, although it was later 
supported by the 3d, 4th, and 5th Corps. The battle was 
unexpected by the Germans, but the brigade and division 
commanders hurried their troops to the sound of firing to 
such good eflFect that they were able greatly to outnumber 
the French. This constant arrival of new organizations 
operated to change the commander of the battle three times 
during the day, but such was the German organization 
that no confusion resulted therefrom. 

Thus, by night of August 7, the French had been de- 
feated at both ends of their line, their flanks had been pushed 
back, and their commanders had been thrown into consterna- 
tion by the double defeat. No plan of resisting the invader 
seemed possible now other than abandoning the frontier 
and withdrawing to the line of the Moselle River. The 
2d, 3d, 4th, and Guard Corps retreated to Metz where they 
were joined by the 6th, and the army of MacMahon with the 
5th Corps withdrew as far as ChUlons, where a new corps, 
the 12th, was added. Marshal Bazaine replaced the Em- 
peror in executive command of the army of the Rhine. 

As soon as von Moltke had re^tablished commimica- 
tions between his armies he gave orders for a general ad- 
vance on the Moselle, directing the 2d Army (less the Sd 
Corps) to march on Pont-ii-Mousson, and the 1st Army to 
follow to the right and rear of the 2d. The 3d Corps was 
to follow the St. Avold-Metz road and maintain touch with 
the French. On the 10th of August this corps encountered 
the French army under Bazaine. Von Moltke, knowing 

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that one corps could not resist an entire army, halted the 
right of his line and started the remainder on a great wheel 
toward Metz in the hope of meeting his enemy in a decisive 
battle. Before these orders could be effected, a sudden 
retreat of the French caused their revocation, and again 
the Germans started their march to the Moselle. On August 
13, Bazaine once more changed his mind and determined 
to make a stand in front of Metz. For the second time 
von Moltke gave the order for the wheeling movement 
to bring all his troops into action. At Colombey, about 
four miles east of Metz, contact was established, the French 
turned to fight, and all day a battle continued in which the 
Germans barely held their ground. At its conclusion the 
French withdrew to the cover of the Metz forts. 

The battle of Colombey, though really indecisive, left 
an impression of victory with the Germans. They con- 
ceived of their vanquished foe a^ retreating with all speed 
upon Verdun, and they pressed forward anxiously to over- 
take and destroy him. Arrived at the Moselle, on^ the 
15th of August, Prince Frederick Charles ordered General 
von Alvpnsleben to march with the Sd Corps on Mars-la- 
Tour. Here, on the 16th, the unsuspecting corps com- 
mander came full on the French army. Hoping to conceal 
his weakness he made up his mind to attack. All day he 
forced the issue, and pushed his corps forward. In the 
afternoon he was supported by portions of the 9th and 10th 
Corps, but he was still hopelessly outnumbered, and should 
have been overwhelmed. This was the battle of Vionville- 

In the morning, von Alvensleben's exhausted troops saw 
the French skirmishers advancing and prepared for what 
seemed a hopeless resistance. But the French demonstra- 
tion was only to cover their army's withdrawal. Meanwhile, 
Prince Frederick Charles, von Moltke, and the King had 
arrived on the field of battle. Reinforcements were ordered, 
and the Germans prepared to redeem their strategical 

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blunder. By the afternoon of the 17th of August, von 
Moltke was certain that Bazaine had drawn up for battle 
on the line of St. Privat-Gravelotte, his left flank resting 
on the fortress of Metz. Had the German chief been op- 
posed by a commander as active and vigorous as himself, 
he would have been in grave danger. For Bazaine was 
on the German flank and might have made a swift march 
to the southeast where, by throwing out flank and rear 
guards to hold the 1st German army, he might have de- 
stroyed von Moltke's lines of communication. This ma- 
neuver, successfully carried out, though it might not have 
affected the result of the campaign, would at least have 
severely hampered the invader. Bazaine, however, knew 
that his staff was incapable of this brilliant but difficult 
feat, and prepared merely for a defen3ive in front of Metz. 
And von Moltke, too, knew the French staff so well that 
he gave no thought to his communications but prepared 
at once to destroy Bazaine's army. 

The marshal had taken up a strong position along a ridge 
running almost due north from the Moselle. Along the 
southern half runs the Mance River in a deep wooded ravine. 
Beyond the source of the Mance the ridge slopes away, 
open and rolling, toward the Ome. At intervals along the 
ridge are the villages of Gravelotte, Armanvillers, St. Privat, 
and Roncourt. The 2d, 3d, 4th, and 6th Corps in order 
from left to right held the ridge, while the Guard Corps 
was held in reserve behind the left of the line. This disposi- 
tion was the weakness of Bazaine's position. His left was 
naturally strong, but because of small engagements on 
that flank on the afternoon of the 17th, he feared for that 
portion of his line, and in consequence left the right in the 
air. Had he placed his cavalry there in support, or had 
the 6th corps been 'furnished with tools wherewith to en- 
trench, the outcome of the battle would unquestionably 
have been different. Von Moltke himself recognized this 
fact when he spoke of the position as being ''almost impreg- 

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nable, " and he saw too that this weakness on the right made 
success possible, for he says, "the French left wing coufd 
not be shaken even by the most devoted bravery and the 
greatest sacrilBces/* But even with success for Bazaine 
in the battle, unless it was followed by the utter rout of the 
Germans — an improbable contingency — the strategic vic- 
tory was von Moltke's, for he had maneuvered the French 
into a position where he stood between them and their 
capital, and from which retreat was impossible, once they 
had accepted the challenge to fight. 

At noon on the 18th of August, the 9th German Corps 
opened the battle by an attack on the French line at Veme- 
ville. Von Moltke's cavalry reconnaissance had not deter- 
mined the extent of the hostile line and it was believed that 
the right of Bazaine's army was at Armanvillers^ The error 
was soon discovered, the 10th and Guard corps were deployed 
on the left of the 9th, while the ,12th Corps was given the 
task of trying to turn the French right. It was not until 
four in the afternoon that the Germans learned that Ron- 
court was the extreme flank, whereupon the 12th corps 
had to be sent still farther north. At five o'clock, the 
commander of the German Guard Corps, fearing that dark- 
ness would leave the battle undecided, began an attack on 
the 6th French Corps at St. Privat. At first he was repulsed 
with a loss of 6000 men in ten minutes, but almost immedi- 
ately the artillery of the 9th and 10th Corps centered on 
St. Privat, and, timing his advance with that of the attack 
on Roncourt by the 12th Corps, the guard commander made 
a second attempt on St. Privat, and this time pushed home 
his assault. The successful capture of St. Privat and Ron- 
court crumpled the 6th French Corps, which fell back into 
disarray, leaving the flank of the 4th Corps unprotected. 
Though firing kept up on the left of the French line, where 
the French had easily held their positions, the collapse of 
the 6th Corps meant the ending of the battle. 

Under cover of the night Bazaine withdrew his forces 

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within the wails of the fortress at Metz, and when morning 
broke, though, his troops were safe for the time being, they 
had ceased to exist as a mobile army. Von Moltke at 
once formed the Guard, 4th and 12th Corps and two cavalry 
divisions (in all 90,000 men) into the 4th Army or Armyj 
of the Meuse, with which he immediately set out in pursuit 
of Marshal MacMahon. The remaining seven corps were 
left under Prince Frederick Charles to invest the fortress 
of Metz. 

Meanwhile, MaclVJahon had assembled his army of four 
corps at Ch&lons. Here in a conference with the Emperor 
(who had left Bazaine before Gravelotte-St. Privat) it was 
decided to march the army to Paris and prepare for the 
defense of the capital. Immediately after Bazaine's dis- 
aster there came a peremptory demand from Paris in the 
name of the Empress that an advance be made toward 
Metz for the purpose of relieving Bazaine's army. There 
were many things to influence Marshal MacMahon's de- 
cision. He knew that the Crown Prince's army was advanc- 
ing on Paris. If he should meet and defeat it, his success 
would only check the Germans temporarily, and he ran 
the great danger of being himself annihilated. If he should 
retreat on Paris, he would then have the best opportunities 
for a successful encounter with the enemy, but such a course 
would mean the abandoning of Bazaine's army to its fate, 
and it would ensure the overthrow of the Napoleon dynasty 
by the now infuriated Parisians. Politics rather than 
military necessity carried the day, and MacMahon started 
toward Metz. 

His route of march was determined by a communication 
from Bazaine to the effect that he hoped to break through 
the hostile investing lines around Metz, and make his way 
to Paris by way of Montm^dy. The Germans were not 
certain of MacMahon's exact position, but they knew that 
he had abandoned Ch&lons for Rheims and accordingly 
the latter town was selected as their objective. On the 

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afternoon of August 25 they received definite information 
that he was moving eastward, apparently to succor Bazaine, 
and accordingly von Moltke issued orders which changed 
the front of the advancing 8d and 4th armies from west 
to north. A decisive battle was imminent and von Moltke 
meant to have all the troops available to insure a victory. 
Steadily MacMahon continued his march, urged on by 
insistent demands from Paris. Wrong though he was in 
heeding them, one must not use them to account for all 
his mistakes. A great factor in his defeat was that he 
employed only one cavalry division for reconnaissance and 
that on his northern flank, when he and every private in 
his army knew that the enemy was on the southern flank. 
Efficient cavalry employed on the right could have foretold 
his ultimate defeat. 

The two armies came together on August 29 in a minor 
engagement at Nouart, and on the following day the 5th 
French Corps at Beaumont was surprised and badly beaten 
by the Army of the Meuse. MacMahon, learning at last 
that his continued march to Metz was impossible, began a 
hasty retreat down the Meuse, the Germans close behind 
him. His route lay toward Sedan, a fortress town only 
seven miles from the Belgian frontier. With a neutral 
country to the north and the German armies to the south- 
east, south, and southwest, there was only one avenue of 
escape from Sedan, the northwestern route by way of Mezi- 
^res. There was desultory fighting all day of August 31, 
and nightfall found MacMahon's troops clustered around 
Sedan, anxiously awaiting the action of the morrow which 
was destined to be the last. 

Von Moltke laid his nets with his customary skill. The 
8d Army was ordered to move to the westward to prevent 
the withdrawal by way of Meziferes. The Army of the 
Meuse was given the task of the direct attack. Specifically, 
the corps orders were as follows : for the 3d Army, the 11th 
Corps to move on Vrigne and later to deploy on the line 

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St. Menges-Fleigneux ; 5th Corps to follow and join the 
11th; 1st Bavarian Corps to ci:oss the Meuse and take up 
a position before Bazeilles ; 2d Bavarian Corps- to occupy 
the heights of Wadelincourt and Frenois, and shell the 
enemy from the rear : for the Army of the Meuse, 4th Corps 
to take up a p>osition in front of La Moncelle ; 12th Corps 
to prolong its line north past Daigny ; Guard Corps to move 
toward Givonne, and connect with the 11th or 5th Corps 
(3d army) as soon as possible. 

The battle field in shape is a rough triangle with the 
Meuse river for its base, and the ravines of Illy and Givonne 
Creeks for sides. Along the banks of these creeks were the 
defensive positions which the French took up on the night of 
August 31, the 12th Corps from Bazeilles to Daigny, the 
1st on its left as far as Givonne, the 7th on the Illy between 
the village of that name and Floing. The 5th Corps was 
held in reserve close to the fortress. Opposite all of these 
positions there is high ground suitable for attacking artillery, 
and the approaches to them give plenty of cover. Both 
of the French lines were in strong natural positions, with 
good cover for reserves, but without sufficient depth — a slight 
reversal crowded them back upon the fortress of Sedan. 

At half -past four on the morning of September 1, the 
1st* Bavarian Corjxs began the attack on Bazeilles, and 
shortly thereafter the 4th Corps took up the attack in front 
of Moncelle and Daigny. Marshal MacMahon was seri- 
ously wounded in the attack on Moncelle, and upon leaving 
the field turned over the command to General Ducrot. 
The new commanding officer scented defeat and at once 
ordered a withdrawal of the 1st and 12th Corps. As this 
movement was being undertaken, the command again 
changed hands, passing this time to General Wimpflfen, who 
immediately countermanded the order and directed a re- 
newal of the fight. The struggle for Bazeilles was con- 
tinued, but before noon the French were obliged to abandon 
it and withdraw on Balan. At the same time the Prussian 

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Guard Corps joined hands with the 5th German Corps to 
the north of Sedan^ whereupon the attack upon the Illy, 
which had been steadily growing hotter, became overpower- 
ing, and little by little the 7th French Corps was forced back 
toward Sedan. 

The German ring about the French army was now com- 
plete. Hope of retreating by way of Mezi^res had long 
been given up and as the afternoon wore away the approach- 
ing disaster became more and more apparent. By three 
o'clock the Emperor was in favor of surrendering in order 
that lives might be saved, for he knew now that the struggle 
was hopeless. General Wimpffen, however, representing 
the hot- and empty-headed war ministry in Paris, would 
not hear of such a course, and, gathering what men he could, 
tried to force a way through the German lines to the south- 
east. The attempt was brave, but suicidal. It met,. as 
it could meet, only with failure, and the French hoisted the 
white flag in token of complete surrender. The following 
day they signed the capitulation which gave to the Ger- 
mans 80,000 prisoners. Among them was the Emperor of 

The battle of Sedan broke the backbone of French resist- 
ance. WBrth, Spicheren, Gravelotte, Sedan coming in 
quick succession had paralyzed one army and destroyed 
the other. Bazaine, siu^rounded by the enemy in Metz, 
could be depended upon for no further assistance. His 
opportunity of breaking out had long gone by, if indeed 
it had ever existed. In Strassburg, in Toul, in Belfort, 
other French forces were held immobile by the troops of 
King William. In various parts of France frenzied efforts 
were being made to raise and equip armies wherewith to 
continue resistance, but the attempt was a tardy one. 
Catastrophe had already overtaken France. Von Moltke 
had accomplished the first part of his plan, the destruction 
of the opposing armies, and was now ready to undertake 
the second part. Sedan had cleared the road to Paris. 

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The German armies now advanced on the capital, encoun- 
tering only one check in the shape of Vinoy's corps which 
had reached Sedan too late to take part. The city was 
reached on Septem"ber 19. The defeat of General Ducrot's 
forces near Versailles left the Germans free to invent Paris, 
and within two days they had arranged their troops for 
the approaching siege. The capitulation within a few days 
of Toul and Strassburg, the former an essential point on 
the line of communications, left the roads clear from Paris 
to Berlin, and at once von Moltke began moving material 
for the siege. Late in October the surrender of Metz, with 
all the armies and supplies contained in it, assured the safety 
of the armies before Paris, and left von Moltke free to give 
his attention to the besieged city. 

There is not space here to give the details of the siege. 
General Trochu, who commanded the defenders, had 400,000 
men in his forces, but they were mostly raw undisciplined 
recruits of a revolutionary type; several times they were 
on the edge of revolt. Over such as these the trained Ger- 
man troops had an immense superiority which they main- 
tained throughout the siege. Despite the many gallant 
sorties and the heroic work of her defenders, Paris was 
unable to rid herself of her enemy, and on January 27, 1871, 
agreed on an armistice, which ended in capitulation. 

Outside in several quarters of France was being waged 
the "People's War" directed by the indefatigable Gambetta. 
But these armies, too, were "pushed raw to the battle,*' 
and one by one came to melancholy ends. Never was a 
braver resistance than was made by these citizen armies 
of France, but never was a more hopeless one. When Paris 
fell, hope for France died, and reluctantly the people gave 
up the struggle and turned their attention to bearing the 
burden imposed upon defeated France. 

Bismarck's politics can receive no clearer illustration 
than by comparing the actions of the victorious armies in« 
Vienna in 1866 and in Paris in 1870. Austria, whom he 

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desired as an ally, was spared the humiliation of having 
a conquering army march through her capital. But the 
French, whom he designed to humiliate as deeply as possible, 
were forced to see the triumphant battalions marched 
through the streets of Paris, and to feel as Jugurtha must 
have felt when, to grace a triumph, he was forced to parade 
in chains through the streets of Rome. Every effort was 
made to sooth Austria: every effort was made to irritate 
France. The success was complete, for within a few years 
Austria was joined in close alliance to her former enemy, 
and in France there was apparent that growing hatred 
which at last culminated in the horror of 1914. 

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During the active campaign, of course, the European 
interests centered about the military duel between France 
and Prussia, but once that campaign had passed its crisis 
and victory for Prussia was certain, political and diplomatic 
affairs resumed their customary importance. Von Roon and 
von Moltke had for a season displaced Bismarck in the public 
eye because of the immediate importance of success in war. 
Bismarck himself complains bitterly of the neglect which he, 
the civil authority and diplomatic arm of the government, 
suffered during the campaign at the hands of the military 
men. Immediately after the ultimate military success 
became assured, however, Bismarck in the ensuing negotia- 
tions became again the chief personage before the public. 

Shortly after war was declared, Bismarck packed up and, 
with his corps of scribes and aides, prepared to accompany 
the army. A member of that corps (Busch) thus describes 
the ordinary procedure of Bismarck and his staff : 

" Throughout the whole war the Chancellor wore uniform. It 
was generally the well-known undress of the yellow regiment 
of heavy Landwehr cavalry. During the early months of the 
campaign he, as a rule, only wore the Commander's Cross of the 
Order of the Red Eagle, to which he afterwards added the Iron 
Cross. I only saw him a couple of times in a dressing gown. That 
was at Versailles, when he was unwell, the only time, as far as I 
know, that anything ailed him throughout the whole war. When 
travelling he was usually accompanied in the carriage by Herr 
Abeken, but on some occasions he took me with him for several 


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days in succession. He was very easy to please in the matter of 
his quarters and was wilhng to put up with the most modest shelter 
when better was not to be had. Indeed, it once happened that 
there was no bedstead and that his bed had to be made upon the 

" Our carriages usually followed immediately after those of the 
King's suite. We started generally about 10 o'clock in the morn- 
ing, and sometimes covered as much as sixty kilometres in the day. 
On reaching our quarters for the night our first duty was to set 
about preparing an office, in which there was seldom any lack of 
work, especially when we had the Field Telegraph at our disposal. 
When communications were thus established, the Chancellor 
again became what, with short intervals, he had been throughout 
this entire period : namely, the central figure of the whole civilized 
European world. Even in those places where we only stayed 
for one night he, incessantly active himself, kept his assistants 
-almost continuously engaged until a late hour. Messengers 
were constantly going and coming with telegrams and letters. 
Councillors were drawing up notes, orders, and directions under 
instructions from their chief, and these were being copied, regis- 
tered, ciphered, and deciphered in the Chancellerie. Reports, 
questions, newspaper articles, etc., streamed in from every direc- 
tion, most of then^ requiring instant attention. 

" Never, perhaps, was the well-nigh superhuman power of work 
shown by the Chancellor, his creative, receptive, and critical ac- 
tivity, his ability to deal with the most difficult problems, always 
finding the right and the only solution, more strikingly evident than 
during this period. The inexhaustible nature of his powers 
was all the more astounding, as he took but little sleep. Except 
when a battle was expected and he rose at daybreak to join the 
King and the army, the Chancellor rose rather late, as had been 
his custom at home, usually about 10 o'clock. On the other hand, 
he spent the night at work, and only fell asleep as daylight began 
to appear. He was often hardly out of bed and dressed before 
he commenced work again, reading despatches and making notes 
upon them, looking through newspapers, giving instructions to 
his Councillors and others, and setting them their various tasks 
or even writing or dictating. Later on there were visits to be 
received, audiences to be granted, explanations to be given to the 
King. Then followed a further study of despatches and maps, 
the correction of articles, drafts hurriedly prepared with his well- 
known big pencil, letters to be written, information to be tele- 

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graphed, or published in the newspapers, and in the midst of it 
all the reception of visitors who could not be refused a hearing 
yet must occasionally have been unwelcome. It was only after 
2, or even 3 o'clock, in places where we made a longer stay, that 
the* Chancellor allowed himself a little recreation by taking a 
ride in the neighborhood. On his return he set to work again, 
continuing until dinner time, between 5.30 and 6 p.m. In an 
hour and a half at latest he went back to his writing-desk, where 
he frequently remained till midnight." 

Bismarck was with his King when the white flag was 
raised over Sedan and when the French General under a 
flag of truce brought the famous note from the French 
Emperor to the Prussian King : 

" Monsieur mon Frdre — N'ayant pu mourir au milieu de mes 
troupes, il ne me reste qu'a remettre mon epee entre les mains 
de Votre Majeste. — Je suis Votre Majesty le bon Fr^re 

Sedan, le 1^ Septembre, 1870. — Napol6on." 

Early the following morning Bismarck was routed out of 
bed to meet the French Emperor in person at the little 
village of Donchery. "A short, thick-set man, in a red cap 
braided with gold lace, and wearing red trousers and a 
hooded cape lined with red, steps from behind the house 
and speaks at first to the French OflScers, some of whom 
are sitting along the hedge by the potato field," writes 
Dr. Busch, describing the scene. "He has white kid 
gloves, and smokes a cigarette. It is the Emperor. At 
the short distance which I stand from him I can clearly 
distinguish his features. There is something soft and 
dreamy in the look of his light gray eyes, which resembled 
those of people who have lived fast. His cap is set a little 
to the right, in which direction his head is also bent. The 
short legs do not seem in proportion with the long uppjer 
part of the body. His whole appearance has something 
unmilitary about it." Possibly Napoleon's appearance at 
the time reflected the despondency of his feelings, for he 
was Upon a mission to arrange with the Germans for the 

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surrender of his army. At his meeting with Bismarck he 
endeavored to arrange a personal interview with the Prussian 
King in the hope that by working upon the royal sympathies 
he might gain easier terms of surrender. Bismarck, how- 
ever, insisted upon unconditional surrender before he would 
grant the Emperor access to King Wilham. After but a 
short delay Napoleon, reaUzing that his army was surrounded 
and helpless and that further resistance meant useless 
slaughter, accepted the terms. 

With the fall of Sedan, the career of Napoleon III closed. 
Two days later, September 4, the Empire fell as a result 
of a spontaneous Paris revolution. Napoleon himself 
went to Cassel in Germany where he remained a prisoner 
until the end of the war. In 1871 he retired to England 
with his wife, the Empress Eugenie, and his son. In his 
career he had wheeled the full circle. From an exile, teach- 
ing mathematics in a Swiss college or serving as special 
constable in a London riot, he had risen to be Emperor of 
one of the greatest states of the world and now became again 
an outcast, living in seclusion in England. During the two 
remaining years of his life, he vainly sought to justify his 
course in the critical moments of 1870 and 1871, and to 
assure to his son a chance for ultimate succession to the 
throne of France. On January 9, 1873, he died. His 
son, the Prince Eugene, after having been educated in the 
English military school at Woolwich, served with a Brit- 
ish expedition against the Zulus in 1879, and was killed. 
With his death this Napoleonic line ended. 

After playing his part in the negotiations following the 
fall of Sedan, Bismarck pushed on towards Paris. He was' 
during this whole period a very busy man. The govern- 
ment of Prussia, of which he was the Chancellor, was being 
carried on from a point far within the boundaries of France : 
the practical difficulties of administration were thereby 
immensely increased. During these critical months it 
was essential that public opinion in Prussia should be di- 

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reeled in certain channels by semi-official publications and 
that the policies of the government should be presented 
in the most favorable light : all this work fell to the lot of 
Bismarck. It was wdl known that M. Thiers had been 
sent by the new provisional government in France on a 
mission to the neutral states in Europe to solicit assistance : 
it was Bismarck's duty to coimteract by every means pos- 
sible the effect of Thiers' solicitations. The French press 
was spreading abroad imtrue and unsubstantiated charges 
of inhuman atrocities on the part of the invading troops: 
Bismarck undertook with success to refute these accusa- 
tions. From the time the Germans began to plant their 
cannons before the forts of Paris, the representative of the 
provisional government, M. Jules Favre, entered into nego- 
tiations with the Germans for an armistice or a peace; 
the negotiations on the part of Prussia, Bismarck had 
to conduct. And most important of all for the future, 
conferences were proceeding with representatives of the 
South German States for the creation, constitution, and 
organization of a united German Empire: and these con- 
ferences, requiring the utmost tact and diplomacy, were 
conducted on the part of Prussia wholly by Bismarck. 
This brief summary of the magnitude and variety of the 
duties that fell to the share of Bismarck during these months 
may give an idea of how completely his time was occupied. 
From October 6, when he and his staff established them- 
selves comfortably at Versailles to await the fall of Paris 
and the close of the war, he was constantly engaged in the 
most important and arduous negotiations. 


During these months some events of great moment were 
taking place in Europe. Since these events were all closely 
dependent upon, or affected by, the existing war, it is well 
to consider them at this point. 

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i. France 

Within the French capital the fall of Sedan had resulted, 
as has been mentioned^ in the immediate fall of the imperial 
government. On Saturday, September 3, the Emperor 
sent to Paris his telegram, "The army has been defeated 
and is captive, I myself am prisoner." The next day, Sun- 
day, the Parisian mob, shouting "Down with the Empire! 
Long live the Republic !" invaded the hall where the legis- 
lative assembly was in anxious session. The leadei^ in the 
assembly without delay proclaimed a Republic and hastily 
organized a Government of National Defense. Empress 
Eugenie, after a futile attempt to rally support for Na- 
poleon, fled from the city. During the remainder of the 
war the Government of National Defense constituted the 
only real government of France. ' 

As the German armies approached Paris, this new govern- 
ment attempted to come to terms of peace. Its representa- 
tives were willing to lay all the blame for the war upon the 
captured Emperor; they argued that, since Napoleon was 
captured and his government overthrown, the Germans 
had no further cause for war and should at once come to 
terms of peace and withdraw from French territory. They 
were unwilling to recognize the hopelessness of their situa- 
tion at the moment. They refused to consider terms which 
would involve any loss of territory ; they must have peace 
with honor; they would never submit, to paraphrase 
Favre's grandiloquent language to Bismarck, "To the ces- 
sion of an inch of their soil or a stone of their fortresses." 
This insistence upon the national honor of France had no 
effect upon the logical cold-blooded Bismarck. He argued 
that French honor was no different from the honor of other 
nations in Europe, that France had certainly intended in 
the event of her victory to annex German territory, that 
Prussia had as much right to force the annexation of French 
territory and intended so to do. When the results of the 

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negotiations became known, the French nation was spurred 
to heroic efforts. The Paris garrison made repeated sor- 
ties, but all in vain. A representative of the government, 
Gambetta, ascended from the city in a balloon, was wafted 
beyond the German besieging lines, and traveled through 
central and southern France, rousing the people to expel 
the German invaders. He recruited large levies, but these 
hastily organized and insufficiently drilled troops were 
no match for the veteran Germans. In October of 1870 
the great fortress of Metz surrendered, thereby releasing 
a huge German army to block whatever efforts Gam- 
betta's troops might make. The Parisians were gradually 
starved into submission. After one final desperate sortie 
on January 19, Favre opened negotiations for capitula- 
tion. On Saturday, January 28, these negotiations were 
finished and an armistice declared. Dr. Busch gives an 
account of the final moments : 

" Saturday, January 28th, — At It o'clock the French negotia- 
tors again arrived — Favre, Durbach, and two others, who are 
understood to be also leading railway officials ; and two officers, 
another general, and an aide-de-camp, both men with a good 
presence. They take lunch with us. Then follows a lengthy 
negotiation at Moltke*s lodgings. The Chief afterwards dic- 
tates to the Secretaries Willisch and Saint Blanquart the treaties 
of capitulation and armistice, which are drawn up in duplicate. 
They are afterwards signed and sealed by Bismarck and Favre, 
at twenty minutes past seven, in the green room next to the Min- 
ister's study upstairs. 

" The French dined with us. The general (Valden is his name) 
ate little and hardly spoke at all. Favre was also dejected and 
taciturn. The aide-de-camp, M. D'Herrisson, did not appear 
to be so much affected, and the railway officials, after their long 
privations, devoted themselves with considerable gusto to the 
pleasures of the table. According to what I can gather from the 
latter they have, as a matter of fact, been on very short commons 
m Paris for some time past, and the death rate last week amounted 
to above five thousand. The mortality was especially heav\" 
amongst children up to two years of age, and coffins for these 
tiny French citizens were to be seen in all directions. Delbriick 

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afterward said that "Favre and the General looked like two 
condemned prisoners who were going to the gallows next morning. 
I pitied them." 

ii. Italy 

Outside of its immediate' theater of operations, the 
war played a decisive part in events in Europe. In Italy 
the war gave the government its chance to make Rome the 
capital. French soldiers, it will be remembered, were 
maintained in Rome by the Emperor Napoleon to prevent 
the Italian government from assaulting and capturing the 
city ; but with the first Prussian success it became evident 
that the French would have to withdraw these troops to 
aid in their home defense. In August of 1870, after the war 
had been going on but a month, the last French soldiers 
left Rome. A month later the fall of Sedan and the end 
of the Empire absolved Italy from all her obligations to 
Napoleon with respect to Rome. King Victor Emmanuel 
invited the Pope, Pius IX, to consent to the occupation of 
Rome by the government troops. The Pope refused. With- 
out delay a well-trained army of more than thirty thousand 
troops was ordered to the attack. The Papal forces resisted, 
but were hopelessly outnumbered. The Italian cannon 
soon made a breach in the wall, and the troops entered the 
city September 20, 1870. On October 2, after a plebi- 
scite in which 133,681 voted for, and only 1507 against, 
unity with Italy, Rome was formally joined with the rest 
of the peninsula under the royal government. 

iii. Russia 

In Russia, too, war had provided an opportunity for 
achieving one of its national ambitions. Certain articles 
of the treaty of Paris (1856) had forbidden Russia to main- 
tain naval forces in, or naval arsenals on, the shores of the 
Black Sea. Both military and economic reasons caused 
Russia to chafe under these restrictions. The Black Sea 

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was Russia's only aJl-the-year-round ice-free body of water : 
consequently, the prohibition of naval forces on the Black 
Sea practically resulted in prevei^ing Russia from having 
any naval forces at all. Furthermore, the Black Sea was 
the great outlet for the immense harvests of grain exported 
from the fertile plains of central and southern Russia. 
This outlet, however, could at any moment be absolutely 
closed at the whim of a foreign power controlling the Bos- 
phorus and the Dardanelles. If Russia were not allowed 
to have naval forces on the Black Sea, she had no prospect 
of being able in time of trouble to force open a channel 
for her huge harvests of grain. The two nations who in 
the negotiations following the Crimean War had been in- 
strumental in forcing these restrictions upon Russian free- 
dom in the Black Sea, were Prance and Great Britain. Their 
desire had been to prevent Russia from becoming as threaten- 
ing as a naval power as she always was as a military power. 
In 1870, however, the successive disasters to the French 
armies made it certain that Russia might safely change 
these conditions with regard to the Black Sea ; for France 
could oflfer no effective opposition, and Great Britain alone 
would scarcely dare to wage war against Russia, especially 
at so troubled a period in continental affairs. Consequently, 
in a note dated October 31, 1870, after the fall of Sedan 
and of Metz, the Russian Chancellor denounced and re- 
pudiated the so-called Black Sea clauses of the Treaty of 
Paris. Although Great Britain immediately protested, her 
statesmen recognized the impracticability of waging war over 
the issue under the existing conditions. Her protest was 
effective only so far as to obtain a concession that the whole 
matter should be laid before a conference of the powers. 
At this conference, which was held in London early in 1871, 
it was agreed that both Russia and Turkey might maintain 
unlimited naval armaments in the Black Sea, and that 
Turkey had the right to close the Bosphorus and the Dar- 
danelles to naval vessels. 

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iv. Formation of German Empire 

For the future history of Europe, however, the most 
important events during these months from October, 1870, 
to January of 1871 were being directed by the adroit diplo- 
macy of Bismarck in his dealings with the South German 
governments. At the very beginning of the war, the idea 
of complete German unity had been uppermost in the 
minds of statesmen of both North German and South Ger- 
man states. And yet so proud and independent were cer- 
tain of the monarchs of the larger South German states 
that the task of persuading them to enter into any union 
in which they would play a more or less subordinate part 
to Prussia seemed next to impossible. Some men, headed 
by the Crown Prince, were inclined to threaten the South 
German states and to force them into a union. ** There 
is no danger," the Crown Prince is reported to have said 
to the Prussian Chancellor, " let us take a firm and command- 
ing attitude. You will see I was right in maintaining 
that you are not sufficiently conscious of your own power." 
Bismarck, however, saw the problem from a different an- 
gle. It was his desire to create a unity in which no com- 
ponent unit should be dissatisfied with its conditions of 
membership. He was willing to make concessions, some 
ihaterial concessions, in order that this satisfaction might 
be assured. He was willing to treat with each of the South 
German states separately, and to meet demands even further 
than the Prussians might generally approve for the sake 
of this essential harmony. Toward the last of the negotia- 
tions, the success of German unity hinged upon the ar- 
rangement with Bavaria. The concessions which Bismarck 
was willing to grant to this great and powerful State 
will illustrate the lengths to which he was willing to go 
in order to obtain the desired good will of the members 
in the new union: — Bavaria's King was to maintain his 
command over his army in times of peace ; Bavaria was to 

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have a special influence in the decisions of the Empire 
on foreign affairs ; Bavaria was to have its own postal and 
telegraph system ; and Bavaria was to retain its own laws 
with respect to marriage and citizenship. 

Dr. Busch describes the scene as Bismarck entered the 
dining roomi the evening of the signing of the Bavarian treaty : 

"Well, the Bavarian Treaty is made and signed. German 
unity is secure, and the German Emperor too." We were all 
silent for a moment. I then begged to be allowed to bring away 
the pen with which he had signed it. "In God's name, bring 
all three," he said; "but the gold one is not amongst them." 
I went and took the three pens that lay near the document. Two 
of them were still wet. Two empty champagne bottles stood 
close by. " Bring us another bottle," said the Chief to the servant. 
"It is an event." Then, after reflecting for a while, he observed : 
"The newspapers will not be satined, and he who writes history 
in the usual way may criticize our agreement. He may possibly 
say, *The stupid fellow should have asked for more; he would 
have got it, as they would have been compelled to yield.* And 
he may be right so far as the 'compelled' is concerned. But 
what I "attached more importance to was that they should be 
thoroughly pleased with the thing. What are treaties when people 
are compelled to enter into them ! And I know that they went 
away pleased. ... I did not want to squeeze them or to make 
capital out of the situation. The Treaty has its deficiencies, but 
it is for that the more durable. The future can supply those 

Bismarck's remarks are important as showing that he 
fully appreciated the criticism to which the treaty would 
be subjected, and as revealing the considerations which led 
him to make such important concessions. 

The finishing touch that was necessary for the comple- 
tion of the work of creating the German Empire was the 
installation of a German Emperor. Bismarck had felt 
from the beginning of the negotiations that "the assump- 
tion of the Imperial title by the King of Prussia upon the 
extension of the North German Confederation was a polit- 
ical necessity, since, by its reminder of days when it meant 

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theoretically more but practically less than now, it con- 
stituted an element making for unity and centralization." 
This finishing touch Bismarck at this time prepared to take, 
but he had more diflBculty than he had expected in per- 
suading the direct and simple-minded old King to assume 
the imperial dignity. For William feared that his elevation 
to this position would cause a departure from the tradi- 
tional plain ways of the Prussian court to the luxury and 
outward magnificence of an Imperial court. "At the first 
mention of it," writes Bismarck, "he said, *What have I 
to do with fancy-ball Major?*" His compunctions could 
be overcome only by evidence that his elevation in rank 
was desired by all Germany ; and such evidence could be 
shown only by the united requests of the German princes, 
accompanied by a declaration from the Prussian parliament. 
It was Bismarck's success in gaining these documents 
which broke down the King's objections. On December 
17, 1870, the King of Bavaria (at the instigation of Bis- 
marck) undertook, on behalf of all the German govern- 
ments, the duty of proposing to the Prussian King that he 
should assume the title of Emperor. At about the same 
time the Prussian parliament submitted to its ruler a me- 
morial of similar import. William then consented. The 
coronation ceremonies were held January 18, 1871, in 
the Hall of Mirrors in the Palace of Versailles, while the 
German cannon were pounding Paris. Around the dais 
on which the Prussian king was crowned were grouped the 
representatives of the reigning families in Germany and the 
military and diplomatic leaders of Prussia. The Grand 
Duke of Baden in person led the cheers after the ceremony 
for the Emperor William, cheers which were taken up 
by the German armies for miles around. The follow- 
iig day the Parisian troops made their last desperate 
sortie ; on the 23d negotiations for the surrender of Paris 

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With the capture of the French capital, the Franco- 
Prussian war was practically completed. Although military 
operations continued, it is true, in central and southern 
France, these operations had no effect upon the final outcome 
of the negotiations for peace. The leaders of the French 
people were willing to treat with the successful Germans, 
and Bismarck for the Germans was willing to name terms. 
This final phase, the aftermath of the war when peace was 
being arranged, lasted for four long months. 

At the beginning of the negotiations, Bismarck refused 
to recognize the credentials of the existing government in 
Paris. That government, formed by and out of the Na- 
tional Assembly in Paris after the fall of the Empire, had 
never received the approval of the nation. Bismarck 
argued that the nation at large might repudiate any terms 
which this self-constituted French government might 
accept. Upon his suggestion, therefore, an armistice 
(the Armistice of Versailles) was concluded at the end 
of January to allow the French to elect men distinctly em- 
powered to represent them in the peace parleys with the 
German victors. 

In these elections, hastily held, the royalists and con- 
servatives counseled i>eace, whereas the Republicans and 
radicals, instigated by the fiery eloquence of Gambetta, 
desired to continue the war still further. The country at 
large, especially the peasantry, was heartily weary of the 
war. Hence, though the people were republican at heart, 
they voted for royalist and conservative deputies in order 
to be assured of inmxediate peace. Thus the elections re- 
sulted in a National Assembly of more than 700 members, 
practically pledged to make peace. 

This assembly meeting at Bordeaux and immediately 
taking over the power from the Provisional Government of 
National Defense, authorized Thiers to conduct the nego- 

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tiations witK Bismarck. Thiers' position was diflBcult. 
He fully realized that Germany held the upper hand and 
that France would have to submit to her terms. Thiers 
expected that these terms would include the surrender of 
Alsace and Lorraine and a huge money indemnity, perhaps 
as high as five billions of francs. After he had met Bis- 
marck, he learned that Bismarck's terms in actual fact 
closely corresponded to his expectations, except that the 
money indemnity was a thousand million francs greater. 
Thiers' patriotic duty was to endeavor, by all means possible, 
to reduce these terms. He argued ; pleaded ; even threat- 
ened further resistance, though in his heart he well knew 
that further resistance was not possible. Bismarck was 
obdurate. The utmost concessions he would make were 
to reduce the indemnity to five thousand million francs 
and to yield from Alsace the city of Belfort : but. in return 
for these concessions the French had to agree to a formal 
German entry into Paris. When these preliminary terms 
were finally understood, Thiers retired to present them to 
the Assembly for its consideration. 

i. The Commune 

In the meanwhile, the National Assembly had fallen out 
with the civil authorities in Paris : in other words, the 
Assembly which had been chosen to represent the people 
of all France was at odds with the governing elements in 
the French capital. 

The reasons for the trouble were both economic and 
political. Paris had been sorely stricken by the siege. 
The stoppage of all normal business and industrial life 
had thrown tens of thousands of men out of employment* 
During the siege, these men had been drafted into the 
National Guard, and the pittance they received as pay 
therein had kept them and their families from actual star- 
vation. When the siege was raised, the wealthier men 
left Paris : the poorer and more miserable were forced to 

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remain. As business could not at once recover from the 
shock of the siege, these men in Paris were still without 
employment and wholly dependent upon the pay they re- 
ceived as members of the Guard. The National Assembly, 
apparently not understanding the situation, ill-advisedly 
passed a measure disbanding the Guard, except for certain 
persons holding regular certificates of poverty, and thus, 
before any other source of income was open to the working- 
men, deprived them of their National Guard pay. 

Again, during the progress of the siege, a general mora- 
torium had been in force, protecting people from the at- 
tempts of creditors to collect debts. When the siege was 
raised, business was so slow in recovering that the people 
requested an extension of this moratorium. The Assembly 
refused this request, rendering thousands of men liable 
to prosecution for failure to meet their obligations. 

Added to these economic troubles was the Parisian dis- 
trust of the political purposes of the Assembly. Paris 
was overwhelmingly republican in sympathy. Its people 
had no wish to see another monarchy enthroned in France, 
or the way opened for another coup d^Hat such as that 
whereby Louis Napoleon had become emperor. The 
monarchist complexion of the National Assembly was well 
known and caused it to be ** suspect." Further ground for 
suspicion was given to the excitable masses in the city by 
the decision of the Assembly (March, 1871) to meet, not 
in Paris, the natural place, but in Versailles, with its tradi- 
tion^ of monarchy. 

Among a people thus rendered discontented, wretched, 
and suspicious, the anarchists, socialists, and radical re- 
publicans were able to enlist many thousands of followers. 
When the Guard had been disbanded, the discharged men 
had retained their arms. The means for forcible insurrec- 
tion were at hand. The old National Guard organization 
provided an organization through which the leaders could 
act. A committee chosen from the Guard prepared to de- 

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fend Paris against any attack by the forces of the Assembly. 
Cannon were mounted at strategical points in the city, and 
attempts by the Assembly to seize them were resisted 
(March 18, 1871). The committee issued a proclamation 
calling upon the other cities of France to' constitute them- 
selves likewise free communes, and suggesting the forma- 
tion of a central government of France constituted by the 
delegates of all communes. 

In the eyes of Thiers and his colleagues, the Parisians 
had been guilty of the basest treachery in thus beginning 
civil war at a time when the government was negotiating 
to rid the country of the foreign -invader, and when the 
German army was still in possession, under the terms of 
the armistice, of the forts on two sides of the capital city. 
The national forces moved to the siege of Paris. From the 
beginning of April until the end of May, civil war was 
waged, a war far exceeding in ferocity any part of the 
Franco-German struggle. On the 28th of May, the last of 
the rebels were shot down in the cemetery of P6re-Lachaise. 
In the days following, the government took a terrible 
revenge, imprisoning, banishing, and summarily executing 
thousands. The terrible days of The Commune left a 
legacy of bitterness and hatred between the Parisians and 
their national government which lasted for a generation. 

ii. The Treaty of Frankfort 

The representatives of the French government did not 
allow the Paris rebellion to interrupt their negotiations 
for peace. They met the German commissioners at Frank- 
fort in May and signed the final terms. The National 
Assembly, which in the meanwhile had moved its place of 
meeting to Versailles, ratified the action of the French 
commissioners on May 18 by the overwhelming vote of 
433 to 98. The final phase of the war was finished. By 
the provisions of the Treaty of Frankfort, Germany was to 
be paid within the space of three years a war indemnity 

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of five thousand million francs in specie; German forces 
were to be quartered in French cities and maintained at 
French cost until this indemnity should be paid ; Germany 
was to have favorable commercial treatment .from Prance; 
and Germany was to receive Alsace (except Belfort) and 
a large part of Lorraine. 


» A period of readjustment followed the war. Internal 
* development in France, Italy, and Germany had been 
sharply and rudely interrupted at the outbreak of the war. 
International relations throughout all Europe had been 
radically altered by the war's result. The individual states 
turned again to the normal pursuits of times of p^eace, 
and attempted to resume the current of their economic 
and industrial life. By artificial stimulation in many lines 
they tried to regain the ground they had lost during the 

i. France 

No state confronted so serious a situation after the war 
as France. A great portion of the most valuable part of 
her territory was under military occupation by the Ger- 
mans; a civil war had just cost thousands of lives in her 
capital and had left a legacy of the bitterest class hatred; 
an enormous indemnity was to be raised and paid to the 
victorious German state; the actual cession of two of her 
eastern provinces was to be carried out ; and at the moment 
the country possessed no authorized government. 

For the next few years following this war, the National 
Assembly retained the governing power. Its authority, 
however, was questionable, for it had been elected solely 
for the purpose of negotiating p^eace with Germany, and, 
when that p^eace had been signed, might legitimately have 
been expected to dissolve. This Assembly did France a 

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service by remaining in existence and carrying her through 
the trying days of reconstruction. It elected Thiers "Chief 
of the Executive Power" and depended upon him for guid- 
ance. Thiers, indeed, was the man of the hour in France, 
the one strong man who held the confidence of the people. 
He labored self-sacrificingly in the interest of his country. 
In June of 1871, confident of the support of his nation, 
he appealed to the country for a huge loan, 2,250,000,000 
francs. Subscriptions poured in for more than double 
the sum requested. The next month half of the German 
indemnity was paid, and the German troops were with- 
drawn from Normandy. A year, later Thiers appealed 
to the country again for a loan, this time for three billion 
francs, and again the countty rose to his appeal and over- 
subscribed the amount more than seven times. In March 
of 1873, the last installment of .the German indemnity was 
paid. In autumn the last German soldier was withdrawn 
from French soil. These labors won for Thiers the title 
of Liberator of the Territory. 

During these years the Assembly had supported Thiers 
in all his measures and had to a considerable extent shared 
his popularity. As the country became more settled, how- 
ever, and the irritation due to foreign occupation was ended, 
it was necessary to solve the problem of a permanent form 
of government for France. Thiers had been a stanch royal- 
ist at the time he became "Chief of the Executive Power,'* 
and he had the support of a clear majority of royalists 
and conservatives in the assembly. In his two years of 
di£Scult experience at the head of the government, however, 
Thiers had become convinced that the country was in no 
mood to accept another monarchy. Members of the ma- 
jority in the assembly endeavored to change his opinions 
and to force a vote or to initiate a coup (Titai for the es- 
tablishment of a monarchy. At first Thiers merely asked 
for a delay, but finally he declared outright his belief that 
the safety and security of France demanded the establish- 

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ment of a republican form. As soon thereafter as the 
royalists felt they could do without him, they voted him 
down on a question of fundamental policy and forced hi;§ 
resignation (May 24, 1873). His successor. Marshal 
MacMahon, elected by the royalist votes, held oflSce pending 
further action on the form and nature of the government. 
With Thiers' resignation, the idea of a republic seemed 
doomed. At this .crisis, however, the royalists' plans were 
thwarted by the character of the chief royalist claimant, 
the Comte de Chambord. This nobleman, proudly ad- 
hering to the divine right theories of his Bourbon ancestors, 
refused absolutely to consider any concessions to the people 
of France, or to give up the white flag so long associated with 
his House. He would not acdept the tri-colored emblem, 
and from this fact men argued that he would not accept 
the constitutional limitations they proj>osed to put upon 
him. The royalist movement was wrecked against the 
fixed determination of the Comte de Chambord. After a 
few years, the character of the Assembly was changed by 
subsequent elections, and the royalist majority cut down. 
Early in 1875 the committee, which two years before had 
been appointed to draw up a constitution for France, brought 
in its report. In the debates which followed, the repubU- 
cans urged an amendment to include in the proposed con- 
stitutional laws the word "Republic." In a memorable 
moment, January 30, 1875, the Assembly accepted the 
amendment by a majority of one vote. The step once 
taken, the Assembly rapidly passed a series of "Organic 
Laws," by them patching up a constitution which provided 
for a President of the Republic, a Senate, and a Chamber 
of Deputies. Not even the most optimistic expected the 
hastily formed constitution to endure. The Royalists 
accepted it as a mere stop-gap until the fulfillment of their 
aspirations : the thoroughgoing Repubhcans regarded it as 
a compromise soon to be set aside for a more liberal and 
radical instrument. 

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Four turbulent years of political strife followed. The 
president of tlie Republic, MacMahon, owed his election 
to the monarchists: he therefore was ready to use every 
means to advance the monarchist cause. His lower legis- 
lative house, the Chamber of Deputies, was Republican by 
a large niajority (approximately 360 to 170) ; his upper 
house, the Senate, was Monarchist (Conservative) by a 
very small majority. He chose for his chief minister the 
Ehic de Broglie, a monarchist of extreme conservative 
policies. After two years of strife, MacMahon, on the ad- 
vice of his monarchist friends, dissolved the chamber and 
ordered new elections in October of 1877. The campaign 
preceding these elections was recognized by both parties 
as decisive for the fortunes of France. The Republicans 
united upon a common platform and chose a committee 
for control of the appeal to the electorate. Gambetta, 
on the Republican side, made some of the most brilliant 
speeches of his career, coining the famous phrases, "our 
foe is clericalism," and "when the country shall have 
spoken, he (MacMahon) must either submit or resign.** The 
Monarchists (Conservatives) had the powerful support of 
the president. Republican journals were prosecuted or 
suppressed; changes in the adminstrative personnel were 
made to build up a kind of political "machine" whose 
interest would lie in maintaining the existing government ; 
presidential manifestoes in support of the Conservatives 
were published to the people ; and the presidential indorse- 
ment given to conservative candidates. In spite of the 
prestige of the government and the strenuous electioneer- 
ing of the Conservatives, the people stood loyal to the Re- 
publicans. The Chamber of Deputies was Republican by 
a large majority; the Senate in the following year (1878), 
at the elections for the renewal of one-third of its members 
in accordance with the constitution, became Republican 
by a safe margin (approx. 178 to 126). MacMahon, un- 
able longer to struggle against a hostile legislative body, 

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resigned and Jules Grevy, a Republican, became president 
in 1879. His election signalized the complete success of 
the Republican form of government in France. Since 
1879 the Republicans have retained firm control of all three 
organs of political power. The Third Republic has lasted 
now for forty years, a longer term than any form of govern- 
ment has lived in Prance since the outbreak of the French 
While this political struggle was going on in the French 
Assembly, the people at large were redeeming the losses 
incurred by the war and taking up again their regular 
economic life. Prance with marvelous quickness entered 
into the spirit of the period — the period when railroads 
were being built, new commercial opportunities opened, 
new countries explored and new colonies gained. The 
millions of francs raised by the huge loans over and above 
the war indemnity payments were wisely invested in the 
furth'^rance of railroad and industrial development; the 
national finances — which, it was said, were carried away 
in a hat by the finance minister appointed in February of 
1871 — were refunded on a sound basis ; the colonies and 
colonial expansion were again subjects of keen interest 
and enterprise ; the military system was wholly reorganized 
on a basis of five years of compulsory service, and the 
fortifications on the borders of the country were remodeled 
and strengthened at enormous cost in order that France 
might live and work within her boundaries in security. 
The world was astounded at the dynamic energy with which 
France labored to redeem her losses. During these years 
the French nation gave an example of soundness and 
financial strength which allowed it speedily to assume its 
former position as one of the world's leaders. 

ii. Germany 

To the east of France the German Empire was during 
these years following the war adjusting itself rapidly to 

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its new unified life. The name Germany no longer stood 
for a region cut up into a number of semi-independent 
political entities, but for a strong unified German state. 
Yet the new state was not without its problems in internal 
affairs. In the first place, the population was not wholly 
homogeneous : Germany neither contained all the Germans 
nor did it contain nothing but Germans. Furthermore, 
among the non-German elements of the population were 
some, as the Poles and the people of Alsace and Lorraine, 
who had been incorporated into the German empire against 
their will. In the second place, the admission of the South 
German States into the alliance which formed the Empire 
had resulted in an enormous increase of the Roman Catho- 
lic element of the population and had sown the seeds of 
religious dissension. And lastly, in the decade from 1860 
to 1870, the lower and middle classes of society, not only 
in Prussia but in all the German states, had received a great 
impulse toward political development, and with the priv- 
ileges they possessed under the constitution of the Dew 
empire were in a position to make their votes count heavily. 

In the new German Empire Bismarck was easily the 
most commanding and influential figure. He was appointed 
Chancellor of the Empire, and by virtue of this oflSice 
directed both the domestic and foreign policies of Germany ; 
he was President of the Council and Minister of Foreign 
Affairs in Prussia, and thus directed both domestic and 
foreign policies of the most important unit of the imperial 
federation; and he was, for the twenty years between 
1870 and 1890, the Prussian Minister of Commerce, and thus 
shared in the promotion and development of the tremendous 
industrial growth of the Prussian State in Germany. 

Of the problems in domestic affairs which confronted 
the new empire, the one which pressed first for solution 
was the conflict induced by the religious dissensions. This 
conflict, commonly called the Kulturkampf, began immedi- 
ately after the promulgation of the Doctrine of the Infalli- 

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bility of the Pope. Bismarck and the government were 
drawn into the religious controversy by the fact that a 
considerable body of Germans protested against and re- 
pudiated the new doctrine. Since this doctrine in Bis- 
marck's mind implied a distinct claim of the supremacy 
of the Catholic church over the civil authorities, his sym- 
pathies were wholly with the protesting Germans. With 
his customary energy he carried the fight to extremes. 
He persecuted the Roman Catholics by a series of stringent 
laws, such as those requiring university education and 
state examinations for theological students, those allowing 
appeal from ecclesiastical decisions to a public court of 
laymen, and those authorizing the state to stop payments 
to the bishops and priests of the church and to suppress 
or banish religious orders from the country. It is hard 
for us to-day to realize how bitter the struggle was in Ger- 
many. By fines and imprisonment, by stoppage of salaries 
and by banishment, Bismarck emptied hundreds of parishes 
of the priests and closed the churches. Of the twelve 
bishoprics in Germany, eight were vacant. And in the 
end it was evident that the Chancellor's persecution, 
like other persecutions, was actually strengthening the 
cause of the people persecuted. Catholics indignantly 
protested against the infamous attacks of the Chancellor. 
Protestants looked upon the conflict with disfavor. Bis- 
marck was forced to recognize the futility of his measures. 
After 1875, he gradually relaxed the severity of the appli- 
cation of the laws and prepared to recede from his position. 
In the routine affairs attending the organization and 
material progress of the Empire, Bismarck showed his 
genius as he had previously done in diplomatic affairs. 
Discerning with keen eye the importance of commercial 
and industrial development in his age, he diverted a part 
of the enormous indemnity received from the French war 
into business channels and caused a great "boom" through- 
out his country. He foresaw the growth of the transpor- 

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tation systems in the coming economic period and was re- 
sponsible for the creation of "An Imperial Bureau of Rail- 
roads," which played a very important part in the raiboad 
development of Germany. In 1875 he established a single 
gold standard of currency (the mark) for the entire Empire. 
In the same year he extended imperia) jurisdiction over 
the whole range of civil law, over legal procedure in both 
civil and criminal cases, and over the organization of justice. 
Furthermore, in that year the Reichsbank (Imperial Bank) 
was instituted under his direction to become the central 
institution in Germany for exchange, finance, and the issue 
of bank notes. Each ^ of these measures played its part 
in fostering a new national sentiment throughout the 
Empire. The breaking down of barriers which had formerly 
existed between the separate states, the centralization of 
the legal and financial systems, the impulse to railroad and 
industrial development imparted from a central source, — 
all these cooperated subtly to influence the people to identify 
themselves with the fortunes of the new State and to forget 
the local interests with which they had formerly been occu- 
pied. As time passed, and new generations came into 
being who were more completely under the spell of the 
imperial influences, the feeling of unity grew constantly 
stronger. Bismarck was fully conscious of this develop- 
ment. Whatever criticism may be directed against Bis- 
marck's character, methods, or policies, it is certain that 
a genuine enthusiasm for Germany underlay all that he 

iii. Italy 

The other country in Europe on which the Franco- 
German War had had the most notable influence in in- 
ternal development was Italy. The acquisition of Rome 
had, it is true, completed Italian unity by bringing the entire 
peninsula under the rule of Victor Emmanuel ; but it had 
brought in its train a number of most serious problems. 

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In the first place, the Pope would listen to no arguments 
for reconciliation, would agree to no concessions. He 
excommunicated the King of Italy, publicly declared him 
a robber King, and proclaimed abroad that the head of the 
Roman Catholic church was living as a prisoner in the 
Palace of the Vatican. In the second place, it was certain 
that the influence of foreign Cathohc states might be en- 
listed to take Rome from Italy and restore it to the Pope. 
It was well known that papal emissaries were busy in Aus- 
tria and France, endeavoring to. gain strength to accomplish 
such restoration. And lastly, it had to be remembered 
that the mass of Italians were themselves devoted Catholics, 
even though they approved incorporation of Rome into the 
Italian kingdom. No measures could be taken by the 
Italian government which might be interpreted as in any 
way persecuting- or oppressing the Pope. The problem 
was one beset with difficulties. 

The measure adopted to solve this problem was, on the 
whole, one of the wisest acts of statesmanship in the annals 
of the new Italy. On May 13, 1871, the Law of Papal 
Guarantees was duly passed, defining on the part of the 
Italian government the status, of the Pope and the relations 
between the Papacy and the civil authority. By the pro- 
visions of this law the Pope's claim to royal honors and 
prerogatives was recognized and the inviolability of the 
Pope's person proclaimed; the use of the Vatican and 
Lateran palaces and of the Villa Gandolfo was assigned 
to him, and the payment of an annual pension amounting 
to $650,000 was guaranteed to him. The Pope proved 
obdurate even in the face of these guarantees, for he looked 
upon them, not as concessions from the Italian government, 
but as conditions imposed by one conquering power upon 
its defeated enemy. He refused to acknowledge the loss 
of Rome; refused to leave the Vatican, inasmuch as he 
would then have to cross territory claimed by a foreign 
power; and refused to accept a pension, inasmuch as he 

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might thereby acknowledge the justice of the ItaUan claims. 
The important end^ accomplished by the Law of Papal 
Guarantees, however, was the satisfaction of Italian Catho- 
lics, and, to a considerable extent, of foreign Catholic nations. 
The Italian government had attempted by tliis law to show 
its respect for the Pope and for papal institutions, and to 
reveal its intentions to reimburse the Pope for his losses, 
^rhe success of their measure is proved by the fact that 
since that date no serious attempt has been made to take 
Rome away from Italy and restore it to the papacy. 

The question of relations with the Pope was, however, 
by no means the only difficult problem confronting the 
Italian government. The kingdom had begun its career 
with a crushing burden of debt, and as the years passed 
the various governments which succeeded one another 
were unable to devise satisfactory means for lightening the 
weight. The taxes levied were uniformly very unpopular. 
The Grist Tax, commonly called the "Tax on Hunger," 
and the extension of the tobacco monopoly throughout 
Sicily, roused especially bitter feeling among the lower 
classes of the population. Not only was the country 
financially impoverished, but the economic and industrial 
situation was bad. Italy had been fpr generations so ravaged 
by wars and plundered by unscrupulous rulers that the 
country had never taken its proper place industrially among 
the states of Europe ; and now that it was at last united 
under a liberal government it was so far behind in the 
competition that its struggles seemed to give it no headway. 
Again, a third problem was presented by the social condi- 
tions. The population was not homogeneous. The northern 
Italians had in education, wealth, and standards of living 
so far outstripped the southern that they looked upon the 
latter as a different and inferior race. Although populous 
cities flourished in the north — Venice, Milan, Florence, 
Turin, Genoa, and Rome — the south was given over to a 
wretched ignorant peasantry. And while the finances of 

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the country were disorganized, the economic resoiu'ced 
undeveloped, the social conditions uijsettled, the states- 
men of the country were fighting in the legislature for 
temporary political advantages. iNo leader emerged with 
a genius sufficient to direct the course of the struggling 
nation toward prosperity. Italy was, during the five 
years following the capture of Rome, poverty-stricken, 
debt-ridden, and, on the whole, miserably unhappy. 

iv. Other States 

Of all the various states of Europe, the three upon whose 
domestic affairs we have dwelt — France, Germany, and 
Italy — were those whose internal development was most 
notably affected by the Results of the Franco-Prussian War. 
The other states of Europe, although naturally influenced by 
the radical change in the grouping of the powers in Europe, 
were not miiterially influenced in their internal development. 
Russia continued with ponderous slowness her attempts 
at reformation in her vast Empire; Austria-Hungarj- 
during these years was adjusting herself to the provisions 
of the Ausgleich and was gradually overcoming the opposi- 
tion of Bohemia and other provinces; Great Britain con- 
tinued under the ministry of Gladstone until 1874, piling 
up huge commercial balances year by year and paying 
strict attention to her home affairs. 


In international relations in Europe, the Franco-Prus- 
sian War made chantrp** ▼•^ore notable than any to which 
attention has been dra%,«. ni individual states. A new 
great and powerful state had been created in central Europe. 
It had shouldered its way into the group of the great powers 
and, at the moment, stood among the strongest of all. It 
may be said, of course, that Prussia was before the time of 

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Bismarck one of the great powers of Europe, but the Prussia 
of 1861 was the least of the powers, whereas the Germanj^ 
of 1871 was among the first. The Prussia of 1861 was a 
nation of 19,000,000, supporting with diflSculty the arma- 
ments necessary to maintain a recognized place in the 
councils of Europe : the Germany of 1871 was a compact 
nation of 41,000,000, with the prestige of an overwhelm- 
ingly successful war against France and with financial con- 
ditions insuring prosperity. No statesman in Europe in 
any of his diplomatic considerations could henceforth afford 
to leave out of account the German Empire. 

In the years immediately following the Franco-Prussian 
War the chief issue around which international questions 
in Europe revolved was the probability of a war of revenge 
waged by France against Germany. At first thought, 
it might seem foolhardy for France to consider a war with 
a power by which she had been so thoroughly defeated, 
but we must consider that she hoped to insure success by 
preliminary diplomacy. Could France ally herself with 
strong military states, she might hope to attack Germany 
and regain Alsace and Lorraine. The prospects for French 
success seemed good. The new German state lay in the 
center of Europe, sandwiched between three great states, 
with two of which she had recently been at war. A coali- 
tion formed between France and Austria might hope to 
crush the upstart power; or, if Russia could be weaned 
from her friendship with Germany, a coalition between 
Russia and France would accomplish her purpose. 

Bismarck was not slow to appreciate the danger. Even 
while the French and German plenipotentiaries were in 
Frankfort signing the final articles of peace, the German 
chancellor was planning to circumvent all French attempts 
to form a coalition against his state. He himself sought 
to form an alliance between Russia, Austria, and Germany, 
and thus to isolate France from the great states of the con- 
tinent. By great tact and careful diplomacy, he contrived 

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to bring together at Berlin in September of 1872, ostensibly 
for the formal and ceremonious recognition of the new 
German Imperial dignity, the Emperors Alexander of 
Russia, Francis Joseph of Austria, and William of Germany. 
The cordial understanding which was achieved by the three 
Emperors at this time gave rise to the belief that there 
was between them a definite alliance, and repeated references 
were made in political circles to the Dreikaiserbund (League 
of the Three Kaisers). We know now that no definite alli- 
ance was formed at this time, that there never was an actual 
Dreikaiserbund ; but the " cordial understanding" was suffi- 
cient to check French diplomacy. So long as it continued, 
France could look in vain throughout Europe for an ally 
against Germany. A year later (187S) King Victor Em- 
manuel of Italy visited Berlin. Rumor had it that he, 
fearing a union of Catholic powers to wrest Rome from 
Italy and restore it to the Pope, was seeking aid from 

Thus by 1875 France was the only radically discontented 
state in Europe. No French politician who did not make 
the recovery of Alsace and Lorraine the keystone of his 
policy could hope for popular acclaim. Any mention of a 
war of revenge was certain to arouse intense enthusiasm 
throughout France. Bismarck was fully aware of this 
situation and on his guard against it. Upon one occasion 
in 1875, when Marshal MacMahon invited the French 
assembly to proceed with the plan of reorganization of the 
French army, the German press blazed forth again with 
the war spirit and was hotly answered in kind by the press 
of France. Evidence exists that Bismarck allowed, and 
even encouraged the German press in the effort to intimi- 
date France. So bitter became the mutual recriminations 
that to the outside observers war seemed a matter of but 
a few days. Then British and Russian representations 
at Berlin were made to calm the storm. Queen Victoria 
wrote a personal letter to William I, and Alexander 11 of 

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Russia went to Berlin to urge the necessity for peace. Ger- 
man provocation quickly ceased, and the fear of war passed. 
There is doubt, however, whether Bismarck really expected 
or desired war at this time. It is more probable that he 
was merely brandishing the sword as a threat. Indeed, 
he had no reason to wish war. He had gained for Germany 
all that 'he could legitimately desire: another war would 
only imperil the existing situation. 

Outside of France, there seemed at the moment (1875) 
no reason to expect trouble. Austria-Hungary, Italy, and 
Germany were upon the most friendly terms. Great 
Britain had at the time shown no indication of a departure 
from her long-standing policy of non-interference in con- 
tinental affairs. Bismarck might well feel that his work 
was accomplished. 

F. summary: bismarck and Prussia, 1862-1875 

From this year (1875) we can take a quick look back and 
see how completely Bismarck had dominated European 
politics since his accessiod to the chancellorship in Prussia. 
He had so manipulated the Schleswig-Holstein affair as to 
bring on a war between Denmark on the one side and Prussia 
and Austria on the other. At the same time, he had so 
represented affairs at outside courts that no nation inter- 
vened to save Denmark. Two years later he plunged 
Prussia into war with Austria, but again he so skillfully 
handled the threads of international diplomacy that his 
opponent fought without an ally. Once more, only four 
years later, he threw down the gauntlet to France; in the 
face of all Europe he contrived to beat France to her knees 
and at the same time to unite the majority of German- 
speaking peoples into a compact empire. In less than eight 
years he had guided Prussia through three wars to become 
the keystone of one of the greatest empires in the world. 
In accomplishing these results, Bismarck was actually oppos- 

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ing the natural course of events in Europe. Prussia was 
in the process of becoming a liberal monarchy in which the 
parUament should be superior in authority to the King : 
Bismarck stemmed the tide of liberalism and strengthened 
autocracy. Schleswig and Holstein might have become 
German states, members of the loose German confedera- 
tion: Bismarck incorporated them into Prussia. Prussia 
might have remained the least of the great powers in Europe : 
Bismarck made her an essential unit in one of the first. 
No country in Europe failed to be influenced in its history 
by the momentous events of these years. As the years 
following the French Revolution may be called the Era of 
Napoleon, and the years following the overthrow of Napoleon 
the Era of Metternich (up to 1848), so the generation begin- 
ning with 1862 may fitly be called the Era of Bismarck. 

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The next international issue in which Bismarck played a 
prominent part was that created by the delicate negotiations 
following the Russo-Turkish war. The German chancellor, 
having framed the German empire according to his own de- 
signs, desired the continuance of peace throughout Europe. 
He could not, however, exert an influence over affairs in the 
Balkan peninsula, where Germany at that time had no direct 
interest, so he was unable to check the outbreak of war. As 
soon as the conflict had finished, however, and the territorial 
settlement became a general European question, Bismarck 
believed that the prestige of Germany demanded that he 
take a part in the international deliberations. He was, 
therefore, forced by what he believed to be political expedi- 
ency to represent his country in the final congress (the 
Congress of Berlin), and to make the importance of his 
appearance and votes therein correspond to his conception 
of the place of Germany in continental European affairs. 


The Russo-Turkish war arose out of the unsatisfactory 
conditions in the Balkan peninsula. The problem presented 
by these conditions was by no means a new one. The 
Eastern Question, as the problem was called, had perplexed 
European statesmen ever since the first intrusion of the 
Turks into Europe. Briefly stated, the Eastern Question 
consists of the issue raised by attempts to readjust relations 


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between Mohammedan Turks and their Christian subjects 
and their neighboring states. It will be remembered that 
the warlike Turks, after capturing Constantinople in 1453, 
extended their power up to the very walls of Vienna. Re- 
pulsed there by the Austrians aided by the Poles imder 
Sobieski in the memorable battle of Vienna (Sept. 12, 1683), 
the Turks were in the following decades gradually forced 
back, yielding up fertile Himgary, Transylvania, the Crimea, 
and retiring behind the Dniester River, -the Carpathians, 
and the Transylvanian Alps. Behind these boundaries 
they held the entire southeastern point of Europe, not to 
speak of enormous territories in Asia Minor,, for more than 
a hundred years. 

At the beginning of the nineteenth century, however, signs 
of disintegration of the empire became evident. From the 
beginning of the Turkish occupation diflferences of race and 
differences of religion had created the bitterest animosity 
between the conquerors and their subject people. Rou- 
manians and Greeks were Caucasian, Serbs and Bulgars 
were Slav, and all four peoples were Christian. The igno- 
rant and fanatical Turks had made no effort to adjust their 
government to these perplexing racial and religious differ- 
ences, but had persisted in maintaining their attitude of a 
superior race toward inferior races. The Christians were 
to the Turks but low-bom people, fit only to bear burdens 
and to pay taxes. Before Moslem judges in Moslem courts, 
the Christian subjects of the Sultan had no hope for justice ; 
under Moslem police they had to submit to continual extor- 
tion; under Moslem tax-gatherers, who had bought their 
p>osition and whose profits depended on the amoimts they 
could screw out of the i>eople. Christians could exi>ect no 
mercy or fair distribution of the burden. The government 
was a continual tragedy of purposeless cruelty and oppression. 

The natural result of such continued misrule on the part 
of a sovereign power would have been formidable rebellion 
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national aspirations among the various Christian peoples ' 
prevented them from uniting to throw off the Turkish yoke. 
Roumanian hated Bulgar, Bulgar hated Serb, Serb hated 1 
Greek, and Greek hated Albanian, each with as intense 
hatred as he bore toward the Turk. Unity of action was 
impossible under these conditions. It was not until a gen- 
eral weakening of the Turkish power at the beginning of the 
nineteenth century that individual peoples dared to revolt. 
With the first prospect of success, one- Christian people 
after another fought for its freedom. The hardy moun- 
taineers of Montenegro had never been fully subjugated; 
they again rebelled with success. Between 1804 and 1817 
Serbia fought, in the end winning practical autonomy. 
In 1829 Greece, after a long and barbarous conflict, received 
foreign aid and gained complete independence. In the 
same year Russia defeated Turkey and forced her to yield 
rights of self-government to the important provinces of 
Moldavia and Wallachia (Rumania). In 1861, shortly 
after the Crimean war (1854-1856), these two provinces 
united into the principality of Rumania and emerged with 
only nominal allegiance to the Sultan. From this time 
forward the only large and important body of Christians 
remaining under the hated Turkish dominion in Europe 
was the Bulgar. It was inevitable that the Bulgars, seeing | 
the happier condition of their fellow Christians in neighbor- : 
ing regions who had successfully revolted against the Turk, ; 
should make the great effort. 


European attention was focused upon the Eastern Ques- 
tion in 1875 and 1876. In 1875 the peasantry in Herze- : 
govina, harassed by the extortions of the tax-gatherers in 
the year following a particularly bad harvest, revolted. 
During the following months the revolt spread through 
the larger and more populous neighboring province of 

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190 THE History of Europe 

Bosnia and deeply excited the Bulgars. Early in 1876 
an insignificant uprising at Tartar Bazardjik in the Maritza 
valley resulted in the death of a few Turkish officials. The 
revenge taken by the Turks was terrible. Since the Bul- 
garian region was near the Turkish capital it bore the brunt 
of the punishment. The Sultan poured some 15,000 regu- 
lar troops and hordes of irregulars known as Bashi-Bazouks 
into the Maritza valley. The atrocities committed by these 
troops, especially by the Bashi-Bazouks, made foreign 
intervention inevitable. Of the eighty villages in the fer- 
tile valley they wiped out sixty-five, murdering, burning, 
and pillaging with a free hand. The scenes in Batak be- 
came famous. The correspondent of the London Times 
sent to his paper so graphic an account of the Turkish pro- 
cedure in that town that a Parliamentary commission was 
dispatched to the spot to ascertain the truth. The report 
of the commission confirmed the corresp)ondent's account. 
The commander of the Bashi-Bazouks had given his word 
of honor that if i:he people at Batak would yield, not a hair 
of their heads would be harmed ; but when they did yield, 
they were butchered like sheep. Some fled to the little 
wooden schoolhouse; the house was fired and the victims 
burned alive. Some fled to the stone church; the roof 
was torn off and burning wood and oil-soaked rags hurled 
down among the people. The official report estimated 
that in Batak alone five thousand i>ersons were massacred. 

"I visited this valley of the shadow of death on the 31st of 
July, more than two months and a half after the massacre," the re- 
port read, " but still the stench was so overpowering that one could 
hardly force one's way into the church. In the streets at every 
step lay remains rotting and sweltering in the summer sun. Just 
outside the village I counted more than sixty skulls in a little 

, The Sultan excused the atrocities on the ground that 
his troops were suppressing rebellion, and rewarded his 
commander at Batak with a medal for bravery. 

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All Europe was aroused by the Bulgarian atrocities. The 
Balkan people who had in recent generations suffered 
the Turkish misrule, — the Serbians, Montenegrins, Rou- 
manians, and Greeks, — realized more keenly than any 
other people the extent of cruelty of which the Turkish 
mind was capable. Serbia and Montenegro at once declared 
war against Turkey (July 1 and 2, 1876). The Russians 
became inflamed at the accounts of the sufferings of the 
people of the same race and the same religion. Thousands 
of Russians in the near-by districts went to Serbia to enlist 
in the Serbian army for the war against the infidel oppres- 
sors. In Great Britain, the shock afforded by the startling 
details of the massacres aroused the people from a kind 
of lethargy in which they Uved so far as affairs in Turkey 
were concerned. Turkey had in the Crimean war been 
Great Britain's ally, so that there existed a tradition of friend- 
ship between British and Moslems. Herzegovina, Bosnia, 
and Bulgaria awakened no such interest as the name of 
Greece had in the 1820's. After the story of the massacre 
became known, the feeling in Great Britain sharply changed. 
Gladstone, who had in 1874 resigned and retired to private 
life, issued from his retirement with a pamphlet on the 
Bulgarian Horrors, and the Question of the East, in which 
he insisted that the government 

" shall apply all its vigour to concur with the states of Europe 
in obtaining the extinction of the Tiu'kish executive power in 
Bulgaria. Let the Turks now carry away their abuses in the 
only possible manner, namely, by carrying off themselves. This 
thorough riddance, this most blessed deliverance, is the only 
reparation we can make to the memory of those heaps and heaps 
of dead; to the violated purity alike of matron, of maiden, 
of child ; to the civilization that has been affronted and shamed ; 
to the laws of God, or, if you like, of Allah ; to the moral sense 
of numkind at large." 

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Could Great Britain and Russia have combined with the 
small Balkan states, the expulsion of the "unspeakable 
Turk" from Europe might have been accomplished, bat 
even while the bodies of the Bulgarian Christians lay rotting 
in the sim grave questions of international policy were 
agitating the powers and keeping them from taking active 

i. Great Britain 

In Great Britain, Benjamin Disraeli became prime 
minister in 1874, the head of a safe Conservative majority 
in both houses . of Parliament. His advent signalized a 
decided change in governmental policies. Whereas Glad- 
stone in the preceding years had occupied himself with 
domestic problems, internal reforms, and the material 
prosperity of the Kingdom, Disraeli attempted to kindle 
the imaginations of Englishmen by the idea of imperialism, 
by a picture of the British colonies consolidated with the 
mother country into the farthest flung and mightiest em- 
pire the world has ever seen. Great Britain's destiny was 
far more magnificent than the mere material prosperity of 
the British Isles : Englishmen should look abroad, aroimd 
the world. Himself gifted with the vivid imagination of 
the east, Disraeli attempted to impress his dreams upon 
the narrow and somewhat conventional British mind. 

In 1875, when he had been minister but a single year, 
an opportunity was offered him to make a sensational 
move in this new imperial policy. The Suez canal, built 
by a French company and formally opened in November 
of 1869, had been an immediate success and had changed 
radically the conditions of commerce with the Far East. 
Chinese, Australian, and Indian commerce, which formerly 
had gone the long voyage around the Cape of Good Hope, 

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now sailed direct through the canal. Inasmuch as Great 
Britain had become the world's great sea-carrying nation, , 
practically seventy-five per cent of the tonnage by this | 
route was British. Above all, the canal was the direct! 
route to Great Britain's richest colony, India. Of the 
400,000 shares of the canal company, 176,602 were owned 
by the inefficient and bankrupt Khedive of Egypt. In . 
1875 it came to Disraeli's knowledge that the Khedive was | 
contemplating the sale of these shares, that indeed he was 
preparing to enter into negotiations with France on the 
matter. With the utmost haste and secrecy, Disraeli got 
into communication with the Khedive by telegraph and 
bought the shares for the British government for about four * 
million pounds. The announcement of the purchase sur- 
prised and delighted the people. It was the first startling 
awakening in recent years to an interest in a world of affairs 
outside those of their own narrow islands. A year later, , 
1876, Disraeli proposed and put through Parliament a meas- 
ure designed still further to impress upon Great Britain 
the imperial idea — namely, a measure creating the British/ 
Queen the Empress of India. Victoria, pleased at what) 
she considered an addition to her titles, assumed the imperial! 
dignity January 1, 1877. 

Disraeli's elevation to the premiership in Great Britain, 
his control of the Suez canal, and his emphasis on imperial 
policies combined with the traditional British misunder- 
standing and distrust of Russia to influence Great Britain's 
attitude in the Balkan situation in 1876. It had been af 
'cardinal pnnciple of British colonial policy to check all* 
Bussian expansion, especially Russian expansion toward' 
Constantinople. Great Britain with the alhes had fought 
the Crimean war in 1854-1856 in pursuance of this policy. 
Now that Great Britain controlled the Suez canaJ, it was 
even more essential than before that no strong power with 
opposing . interests should be allowed to establish itself 
at the Bosphorus, in easy striking distance of the British 

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direct line of communication with her richest colony. After 
an analysis of the situation as cynical and cold-blooded as 
any ascribed to Bismarck, Disraeli could look dispassion- 
ately on the sacrifice of the Bulgarian Christians without 
advocating any attack on the assassins. In his mind, the 
imperial interests of Great Britain, which demanded that 
/Great Britain should support Turkey against Russia, out- 
\ weighed the sufferings of the Christians in Turkey. When 
ihe had to parry criticism of his policy in Parliament, he 
emphasized the honorable qualities of the Circassian Turks, 
claimed the reports of the massacres were grossly exag- 
gerated, or by his supreme power of ridicule and irony at- 
tempted to put his critics at a disadvantage. Even when 
popular opinion in Great Britain seemed turned against 
him, and some members of his cabinet resigned in dis- 
approval of his policies, he maintained steadily the same 
, principles. 

ii. Russia 

In Russia the suspicions of Great Britain were fully 
appreciated, but public feeling had been deeply touched by 
the misfortunes of the Slav Christians tmder the Turkish 
yoke. The daring of Serbia and Montenegro in declar- 
ing war against so formidable a foe as Turkey called forth 
from all Russia the greatest admiration; their successive 
defeats by the Turkish forces aroused a fiery sympathy. 
When in October of 1876 all of lower Serbia was in Turkish 
hands and the road was open to Belgrade, the Czar was 
forced to act. He stopped the Turkish advance by com- 
pelling the Turks to grant the Serbians an armistice, and 
then again appealed to Great Britain to agree with him 
upon some means of settling the situation. Affairs in Turkey 
were intolerable, he informed the British ambassador, and 
if the great powers of Europe were not prepared to act with 
energy and firmness, he would be obliged to act alone. 
Great Britain could agree to no action which would weaken 

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Turkey. In pursuance of his fixed policy, Beaconsfield 
went so far as to order the fleet at this critical stage in nego- 
tiations to Besika Bay near the entrance to the Dardanelles. 
There is reason to believe that Disraeh personally favored 
war against Russia, but was outvoted in his cabinet. A few 
months were passed in further negotiations. Turkey, 
relying upon the possibility of British assistance, would 
yield nothing. Great Britain, although not daring to offend 
public opinion at home by active intervention in Turkey's 
favor, would take no measures against Turkish interests. 
Russia alone was anxious for war. The Czar disclaimed 
all desire for conquest, specifically pledged his word that 
'"he had not the smallest wish or intention to be possessed 
of Constantinople," and declared himself actuated solely 
by humane motives. He declared war against Turkey April 
24, 1877. 


At first glance the war between Turkey and, Russia sug- 
gests an encounter between a giant and a pygmy. Russia, 
with her broad fields, her inexhaustible supplies, drawing 
her army from a population of ninety millions seemed to 
have all the requisites of success when compared with the 
mountainous land where the Turk recruited his army from 
amongst the seventeen million Mohammedans who were 
eligible for service. Circumstances, however, combined 
to balance the scales. The Crimean war, only twenty 
years before, had crippled Russia, and the treaty which 
followed had prohibited her a fieet on the Black Sea. This 
latter disability had been removed with the tacit consent 
of Bismarck in 1870, but money was needed to rebuild the 
new ships. Moreover, she needed to reorganize and equip 
a modern army, to build railroads, and to develop resources, 
if she were to carry on a brilliant war after the fashion of 
the Germans. For all these things the money was lacking, 
and the bankers of Europe were Great Britain and France who 

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had imposed the terms of the Treaty of Paris. On the other 
hand, Turkey had in Great Britain a ready source of supply 
for whatever gold was needed, and though the political 
corruption in Turkey diverted much of this from its proper 
uses, nevertheless enough money was used honestly to 
arm her forces with modem weapons and to build a number 
of first-class ships for the navy. By reason of these, com- 
mand of the Black Sea was Turkey's during the war. 

In organization and commanders, the Russians had their 
opponents at a disadvantage. In 1874 the Czar had issued 
an imperial ukase which provided for universal service 
whereby 150,000 men entered the standing army yearly. 
Service of six years with the colors was followed by nine 
years in the reserve, and five in the militia. All who were 
not chosen for active service were trained in the militia. 
The Czar's oflBcers of the better class had made a study of 
the methods of von Moltke, and had a fair understanding 
of strategy as outlined by him, but were deficient in a knowl- 
edge of tactics. The men in the ranks were the impassive, 
ignorant peasants, devoted to the Czar; good soldiers 
when well led, but stupid and lacking in initiative. 

The army which was organized to carry on the war con- 
sisted of nine corps, each of two infantry divisions and one 
cavalry division. To each corps was added artillery 
organizations with a total armament of 108 guns — four- 
and nine-pounder bronze guns of an obsolete model. The 
infantry was armed in part with the Berdan rifle, an up-to- 
date small-bore weapon, and in part with the Krenk rifle, 
a converted breech-loader, much inferior to the former. 
In the cavalry, the Lancer and Hussar regiments carried 
sabre, lance, and Berdan carbine; the Cossacks, sabre, 
lance, and Berdan rifle; the Dragoons, sabre and Krenk 
rifle. In addition to the above were siege guns, pontoon 
trains, and other necessary equipment, which brought Russia 
to a strength of 200,000 men, 850 field pieces, and 400 si^e 

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As for Turkey, the army was in a wretched condition. Her 
forces were acquired by a system of compulsory service, 
limited to the Mohammedan portion of her population. 
Service in the standing army, the Nizam, was of four years' 
duration, and was followed by a service of twenty years 
in three classes of reserves. Exemptions from the Nizam 
were easily obtained, and the training in the reserves was 
fragmentary. The government had taken some steps to 
prepare the army for the war, but the defects were of a 
nature that could not be removed by a few weeks of frenzied 
preparation. It has been said that there were no books 
on the art of war in the Turkish language. However that 
may have been, it is certain that the army oflBcers received 
no regular training for their positions, and possessed no 
knowledge of strategy, tactics, or organization. The rank 
and file were good marchers and good fighters, who needed 
only leadership to produce a splendid army. 

Theoretically, this army of Turkey was organized with 
the corps as the unit, but such was the confusion that fre- 
quently battalions of different corps fought in the same 
brigade. For fighting purposes the unit was the battalion 
and the higher forms were organized as occasion demanded. 
Three quarters of the infantry was armed with the Peabody- 
Martini rifle ; the remainder with the Snider. The Martini 
was as good a rifle as was in existence at the time; the 
Snider was inferior but was an excellent weapon. The 
former was sighted to 1800 yards, the latter to 1300. The 
cavalry was badly motmted and had little or no training. 
Its arm was the Winchester rifle and revolver, the former 
being replaced in some squadrons by the lance. The artil- 
lery was armed with Krupp breech-loaders, four- and six- 
pounders. These were greatly superior to the Russian 
field pieces, but the advantage in weapons was more than , 
counterbalanced by the lack of training in the personnel. 
To oppose her enemy, Turkey had in Europe 265,000 men 
and 450 guns, but both men and guns were scattered here 

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and there about her territory and only casual efforts were 
made to collect them. The large Turkish armies are ac- 
counted for by the fact that Turkey had just engaged in a war 
with Serbia the previous year, and fully 95,000 of these 
troops were in Bosnia, Montenegro, and Herzegovina. 

The principal battle ground of the war was that strip of 
what is now Bulgaria which lies between the Danube River 
and the Balkan Mountains. The Turkish frontier in 1877 
was along the Danube River. At Rassova, the Danube 
turns northward, and here between the river and the sea 
is that territory known as the Dobrudja. Through this 
barren swampy country lies the most direct road from 
Russia to the Dardanelles, and along it the victorious armies 
of 1828 marched to Constantinople. But at that time, 
Russia commanded the Black Sea and was able to bring 
supplies from the sea for her advancing columns. In 1877 
Turkey was supreme on the sea, and could not only prevent 
the supply of such an advancing army, but could land troops 
to attack its flank. Moreover, at Silistria, Varna, Shumla, 
and Rustchuk, in the so-called Quadrilateral, were strong 
forts which must either be reduced by the invader, or masked 
by strong detachments of his forces. 

To the west along the Danube were the fortified towns 
of Sistova, Nikopol, Rahova, and Vidin. The Russians 
had information that Osman Pasha was at Vidin with 30,000 
men, that some 10,000 men were at the other three Danu- 
bian cities, that Abdul Kerim Pasha, the Turkish com- 
mander-in-chief, was in command of the Quadrilateral 
with 85,000 men, and that Ali Pasha was in the Southern 
Dobrudja with 18,000 men. 

Knowing these dispositions. General Nepokoitschitzki, 
the Russian chief of staff, formed the following plan: One 
Russian corps would enter the Dobrudja to protect the Rus- 
sian flank from Turkish troops coming from east of the 
Danube; the remainder would force a crossing of the 
Danube between Rustchuk and Nikopol, leave detachments 

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to mask the forts of the Quadrilateral and the army at 
Vidin, and march over the Balkan to capture Adrianople. 
There would then be nothing between the Russian army 
and the Golden Horn. The plan was faulty in that it pro- 
posed that one army should leave detachments strong 
enough to deal with two opposing armies, each almost equal 
in strength to itself, and yet march on rashly into the hos- 
tile country. Nepokoitschitzki overlooked the fact that so 
long as Turkey controlled the sea she could bring troops 
from her provinces to meet this small invading force, and 
he did not recognize the fact that geographical points are 
hot necessarily strategic points. In his study of von Moltke, 
he had not grasped the principle which should have guided 
him in this war, viz. : that while the capture of Adrianople 
and Constantinople was important, the real strength of 
Turkey as of every other country, lay in her armies, and 
against them his blows should have been struck. 

The crossing of the Danube was apt to prove a difficult 
task, for the Turkish gunboats were in control of the river, 
and the Turkish forts commanded all the good crossing 
points. But the Russians had completed an understanding 
with Rumania whereby the Czar's armies were to be allowed 
to cross Rumanian territory, so that the Grand Duke 
Michael was able to march his troops at once to Bucharest. 
In spite of this great help, though hostihties were commenced 
on the 24th of April, 1877, it was the 24th of June before 
the Russians had cleared the Danube of the Turkish craft 
from Nikopol to Rustchuk, and had prepared the rafts and 
pontoons for the crossing. On the 22d day of June, the 
XIV Corps crossed at Galatz and pushed south into the 
Dobrudja to carry out the first part of the Russian plan. 
Two days later a feint of crossing was made just before 
Nikopol, and on June 26, the Turkish commander being 
entirely at sea as to the Russian intention, the real crossing 
was effected by the VIII Corps at Sistova. Only a half- 
hearted attempt was made to oppose it, so that the Russian 

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commander established his bridge successfully and started 
pushing his troops across as rapidly as possible. Abdul 
Kerim remained inactive, and offered no further opposition 
to the crossing. By leaving garrisons to hold the fortresses 
and marching with his main body toward the probable 
crossing point, an active Turkish commander could have 
made the passage of the Danube a costly undertaking for 
the Russians. Abdul Kerim, however, not only took no 
such steps, but remained ignorant of the Russian concen- 
tration at Bucharest, and refused to believe that the affair 
at Sistova was anything more than a "demonstration," 

Once across the Danube, the Russians lost no time in 
beginning their southward march. General Gurko was 
placed in command of a special advance guard of 10 bat- 
talions of infantry, 31 squadrons, and 32 gims, which was to 
push rapidly to the south, secure a pass over the Balkans, 
damage Turkish lines of communication as much as possible, 
and endeavor to stir up a revolt in Bulgaria. On the 3d 
of July, Gurko crossed the Russian bridge at Sistova, and 
hurried to Tirnova, where, after defeating a small force of 
Turks, he gained information of the mountain passes to the 
southward. Shipka Pass, the main thoroughfare through 
the Eastern Balkans, was held by a detachment of 3000 
Turks, but none of the minor passes was held in force. 
Gurko waited in Tirnova until the arrival of the VIII Corps, 
and then after arranging with that Corps' commander for 
a simultaneous attack of both ends of Shipka Pass, he pushed 
on to the southeast and crossed the Balkans by the Hainkoi 
Pass. His march was so delayed by small hostile bands, 
that he was unable to cooperate with the VIII Corps when 
that body attacked the Pass on July 17. As a conse- 
quence the attack from the north was repulsed, but the 
Turkish commander felt unable to hold the situation, and 
accordingly, on the night of July 18-19, abandoned the 
Pass. The Russians occupied it and held it imtil the end 
of the war. 

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The authorities at the Turkish capital were frightened 
by the vigor of Gurko's advance, and realizing that Abdul 
Kerim was doing nothing to ward o£f the approaching dan- 
ger, they selected Mehemet AU to supersede him as com- 
mander-in-chief of the Turkish forces in the field. The 
new commander assumed his duties on July 19 and at 
once began concentrat^ig at Rasgrad. Meanwhile the 
Russians continued poiuing troops across the bridge at 
Sistova. The VIII Corps crossed as we have seen on June 
26. The XII and XIII Corps crossed from July 3 to 
July 8; the IX was across by the 10th; the XI Corps 
followed ; and the IV corps effected its crossing diuing the 
last days of July. The VII Corps remained at Odessa, 
and the X in Crimea. 

A new danger now became apparent to the Russians — 
Osman Pasha, who had been isolated at Vidin, received 
orders to move with his 30,000 men toward the Russian 
armies. His plan was to unite with the Turkish force at 
Nikopol and attack the Russian flank between Biela and 
Timova ; but before he could put it into operation, a suc- 
cessful attack on Nikopol by the IX Russian Corps on July 
16 caused him to move to Plevna and take up a defensive 
position there. Within two days the Russians advanced 
on Plevna, and after an artillery bombardment of about 
an hour attacked at four separate points. The assault 
was so badly managed that the Turks gained an easy vic- 
tory, whereas the Russians were forced to retire after hav- 
ing lost about 3000 men. This is known as the first battle 
of Plevna. 

Plevna now became the real vortex of Russian activities. 
The Russians dared not ignore the presence of thirty thousand 
of the enemy on their flank. An advance to the south was 
impossible. The immediate defeat of Osman Pasha and 
the occupation of Plevna became imperative. Detach- 
ments of the IV and XII Corps were joined to the IX, and 
on July 30, 1877, General Krtldener advanced to the second 

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attack.- Osman Pasha had in the meantime received rein- 
forcements of fourteen battalions and had strengthened 
his position by entrenchments. The Russians attacked 
after a six-hour artillery action, but not with the same 
assurance which marked the first battle of Plevna. General 
Kriidener had thoroughly reconnoitred the position and 
realized the uncertainty of success^ but his orders from the 
Russian headquarters left him no alternative. The assault 
was easily repulsed, and the Russians retired with a loss of 
7800 men. The defeat was so decided that for the moment 
all other activities ceased, and the full attention of the in- 
vaders was turned upon Plevna. Two new infantry divi- 
sions were mobilized, 175,000 militia were called to the 
colors, and the Rumanian troops which had been offered 
to Russia were accepted. 

The end of July saw the Russian army divided into four 
parts: one corps in the Dobrudja; two corps opposed to 
Osman Pasha at Plevna; three corps facing Mehemet 
Ali on the Lom river (near Rasgrad) ; and Gurko's detach- 
ment south of the Balkans where Suleiman Pasha had an 
army of 30,000 which had come from Montenegro. The 
Turks were in a position to make a splendid strategic move. 
Had Suleiman avoided Gurko and joined either Mehemet 
or Osman » his force would have been able to win a decisive 
victory for either one. No such step was made, however, 
and in addition, no offensive was made by Osman after his 
two successes at Plevna. With Oriental inactivity the 
Turks seemed to wait calmly while their enemy increased 
his army until it should be able to outnumber their own. 
One further stupidity marked the handling of Suleiman's 
army. Gurko, who was unaware of the arrival of Sulei- 
man's army, on July 29 attacked what he thought was 
the small command of Reouf Pasha but what was really 
the two forces combined. The defeat which ensued forced 
him to withdraw over the Balkans, leaving a small garrison 
on the Hainkoi Pass. Instead of following up his victory, 

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Suleiman waited at Yeni Zagra until August 17, when 
he attempted to retake the Shipka Pass. In the desperate 
fighting of the next few days, Suleiman lost 12,000 of his 
men without result, for the Russians could not be driven 
out. In September he repeated the attack with the same 
result — no gain and a frightful loss of men. Thus the 
army which might have turned the tide for either Mehemet 
or Osman north of the Balkans was dashed to pieces on the 
Shipka Pass. 

The August attack on the Pass was followed by activities 
on the Lom river. Mehemet Ali planned to advance by 
way of Osman Bazar, effect a junction with Suleiman, and 
then, having driven the Russians out of Timova, advance 
to the relief of Osman at Plevna. During late August 
and early September he gained some success against the 
Czarevitch, who was commanding the opposing line, but on 
September 21 he met a decisive reverse at Cerkovna 
and was forced to give up his plan without having effected 
anything. In justice to Mehemet, it should be said that 
his plan was good, but its effectiveness was destroyed by the 
l^ck of co5peration on the part of Suleiman, who had gained 
the ear of the ministers at Constantinople. On October 
2 the supreme command passed from Mehemet to Sulei- 

But these movements and the fighting on the Shipka 
were of lesser importance. The perplexing diflficulty was 
Plevna. Reinforcements in great numbers had been brought 
by the Russians and by September they were vastly superior 
in strength to Osman Pasha's army. In early September 
they attacked and captured Lovcha, which was an important' 
point on Osman's line of communications with Sofia. En- 
coiuraged by this, the Russian commander now decided 
upon a third attack of Plevna. His plan was similar to 
the other two — a long artillery bombardment followed by 
a simultaneous attack from three sides. Four days of in- 
cessant but ineffective artillery fire were followed by an 

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infantry attack of savage intensity. For two days inter- 
mittent assaults were kept up, at the end of which time the 
baffled Russians withdrew, having taken and held only 
one redoubt. The attempt had cost them 20,000 men, 
whereas the Turks had lost but a quarter as many. The 
same error characterized all three attacks on Plevna — the 
dispersion of troops so that the final assault was made on 
too large a front. 

A detailed account of the ensuing operations at Plevna 
belongs, not to such a brief sketch as this, but to a study of 
fortification. An investment of the town became necessary, 
and General Todleben, the hero of Sebastopol, was given 
the task. His preparations consumed the month Septem- 
ber 25 -October 25, 1877, during which time Osman Pasha 
revictualed his army and raised his force to a fighting 
strength of 48,000. The siege now began in earnest. -Sulei- 
man on the Lom made spasmodic attempts, all of which 
were futile, against the forces confronting him, probably 
with the idea of marching to the assistance of Osman. On 
the Shipka Pass, Vessil Pasha continued to hold the Russians, 
but, except for small demonstrations, remained inactive. 
The only definite attempt made for the relief of Osman was 
when an army under Mehemet Ali was concentrated at 
Sofia and Orkhanie. Russian detachments, however, drove 
the Turks from the latter town, and held them fixed in the 
passes of the Balkans. In the early days of the siege, Osman 
had begged to be allowed to attempt to join Mehemet, 
but the authorities had refused him permission. Now in 
the early days of December, they saw that the fall of Plevna 
was inevitable and they gave a tardy consent to his plan. 

The attempt was doomed to failure, but circiunstances 
necessitated its being made. Osman*s supplies were almost 
exhausted and fully a quarter of his troops were ineflFective 
from disease. On the night of December 9 he massed 
his troops on the west of Plevna, hoping to force his way 
through the encircling enemy. In the darkness of a winter 

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dawn he made his attempt and deployed his troops on the 
left bank of the Vid preparatory to a final attack. But the 
watchful Russians had discovered his plan and had massed 
troops at the sortie point. In addition, the forts to the 
east, depleted of men because of the contemplated evacua- 
tion, were captured by the Rumanians and Russians, and 
their guns turned against the Turks. Osman's wagon- 
trains were fired into on the bridges by the Russian artillery, 
and a hopeless confusion resulted. The Turks kept up the 
despairing struggle for a full five hours, at the end of which 
Osman surrendered unconditionally. 

With the fall of Plevna, the fear of an attack on the Rus- 
sian flank was removed, and though it was now the dead of 
winter, the Grand Duke determined to continue his advance 
toward Adrianople. The Czarevitch's army on the Lom 
was left north of the Balkans to guard the communications. 
The remaining troops moved southward in three columns : 
one under General Gurko by way of the Curiak pass near 
Orkhanie ; one under General Kartzoff through the Trojan 
Pass ; and a third under General Radetzky over the Shipka 
Pass. Gurko captured Sofia and advanced on Adrianople, 
pursuing the army of Mehemet Ali. Radetzky fell upon 
the army of Vessil Pasha at Shenovo on January 9, 1878, 
and captured it to a man. Suleiman had named Tatar 
Bazardjik as his point of concentration, where he was joined 
by Mehemet Ali. The rapid advance of General Radetzky 
after his success at Shenovo assured Suleiman that he could 
never reach Adrianople, so after a few spiritless skirmishes 
around Philippopolis, he set out for the Aegean on January 
19, and finally arrived at Enos on the 28th. From here 
his army went by sea to Constantinople. The remaining 
Turkish troops under Mehemet Ali, were pushed rapidly 
back toward the Dardanelles, and when the armistice was 
declared, on January 31, the remnants of the Turkish armies 
were facing the Russians from behind the Buyuk-Tchemedji 
lines, less than thirty miles from Constantinople. 

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The fall of Plevna had been the turning point in the war. 
Without its capture, the Grand Duke could not have ad- 
vanced south of the Balkans. But even with Plevna taken, 
the Turkish hope was not lost. Had Suleiman been pos- 
sessed of any knowledge of strategy, he might yet have 
averted the ultimate catastrophe. A rapid concentration 
at some central point such as Adrianople would have en- 
abled him to meet separately the three advancing Russian 
columns through the Curiak, Trojan, and Shipka Passes, 
and deal a crushing blow to one or more of them. Instead, 
he delayed his concentration and left Vessil Pasha to be 
annihilated at the Shipka where his army was useless. It 
is true that the war ministers at Constantinople were 
constantly interfering with and hindering the generals, 
but they could not have prevented the following up of 
victories had the commanding officers been minded to take 
advantage of them. The Turkish soldier had fought well, 
and in any engagement where niunbers were anything 
like equal had proved himself the superior of the Russian. 
The blame for the defeat must fall where it belongs — on 
the officers commanding the Turkish armies in the field. 

The fact must not be overlooked that while this campaign 
was being carried on in the Balkans, another was being 
directed in Asia Minor. In the neighborhood of Erzenun 
and Kars fierce fighting was carried on by numbers out 
of all proportion to the benefit either side expected to gain 
from the campaign. 

The fall of Adrianople on January 20, 1878, marked the 
last effective resistance of the Turkish army. The line to 
Constantinople was open, the morale of the Turkish troops 
had been broken by a series of defeats, hope of British in- 
tervention on the side of the Porte was gone. As the Rus- 
sian army began to move out of Adrianople toward the Turk- 
ish capital, the Sultan sued for peace. 

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With Russia's decisive victory and the prospect of peace 
between the two warring states, the settlement of the issues 
at stake again passed into the larger sphere of general Euro- 
pean interests. The near Eastern Question — i.e. Turkey, 
her territory, and her relations with her subject Christian 
peoples and her neighbor Christian nations — was not one 
which could be settled by two nations with consideration 
of their own interests alone. It was a question, an issue, f 
in which all the great powers of Europe were vitally con-j 
cemed. Great Britain and Austria-Hungary especially/ 
were actively interested in the trend of events. On Decem-j 
ber 13, 1877, the British government reminded Russia of 
its pledge not to acquire Constantinople, and expressed the 
hope that the city would not be occupied, even temporarily, 
as a military measure. Three days later Russia replied 
that under the circumstances it must have full hberty of 
action. The fall of Adrianople and the advance of the 
Russian armies beyond that point toward the Turkish cap- 
ital increased the tension between Great Britain and Russia. 
Popular feeling in Great Britain, which had been aroused 
by Gladstone's flaming pamphlet to sympathize with 
Russia and condemn the Turks, now underwent a complete 
"about face," for Russia seemed to have lost the character 
of a state championing oppressed Christians and to have 


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unmasked her real character as ambitious and grasping. 
Russia on her part, resenting the suspicion of her bad faith, 
consented to an armistice (January 31, 1878) preliminary 
to the discussion of terms of peace, and moved forward to 
occupy the Tchataldja lines. At this forward movement 
the British fleet cleared for action, loaded its guns, and sailed 
into the sea of Marmora. The Russians on their part 
sowed the near-by waters with mines and awaited attack. 
For weeks the two forces confronted one another in a sit« 
nation where the slightest incautious move would have 
precipitated war — a war, which, as Bismarck wittily re- 
marked, would have been a fight between an elephant and 
a whale. Diplomacy finally triumphed, however, and the 
respective forces were withdrawn to safe distances. 

Austria-Hungary was equally aroused at this time. The 
Emperor had in the beginning looked with complacency 
upon the Russian successes, for he had signed a treaty with 
the Czar agreeing to maintain neutrality providing that in 
the final settlement no territorial arrangement inimical to 
Austrian interests should be made, and providing that 
Austria-Hungary should receive the Turkish provinces of 
Bosnia and Herzegovina. As the war progressed, however, 
Russia stood forth as the champion of the Slavs, so that 
Austria-Hungary feared her rival had no intention of hand- 
ing over the provinces inhabited by Slavs to Austrian con- 
trol. Furthermore, the new Bulgarian state was planned 
(according to credible rumors) to extend to the Adriatic 
sea. Such extension of a state certain to be under Russian 
influence was an encroachment upon territory which Austria 
had already marked out for herself. Ever since the Italian 
lands had been lost, Austria-Hungary had looked forward 
to territorial expansion and political influence along the 
Albanian coast. Inspired by these considerations, Austria- 
Himgary, as well as Great Britain, let it be known that no 
settlement by Russia and Turkey alone would be satisfactory 
to her. As early as February 5, 1878, the imperial chan- 

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cellor sent a circular note to the powers of Europe suggesting 
a general congress to establish "'the agreement of Europe 
on the modifications which it may be necessary to intro- 
duce" into the treaties affecting Balkan conditions. 

In the meanwhile^ the negotiations between Russia and 
Turkey for peace proceeded rapidly. The Treaty signed 
at San Stef ano, a little village on the shores of the sea of 
Marmora, formally terminated the war March 3, 1878. 
Its chief provisions had to do with the creation of the new. 
state, Bulgaria, whose boundaries were made very broad, 
reaching from the Danube to Thessaly and including most 
of Albania, Macedonia, and Thrace. This Bulgarian state 
was given autonomy, but was still tributary to the Turkish 
Sultan. In addition to the creation of an autonomous 
Bulgaria, the Turks were obliged to recognize the complete 
independence of Russia's small allies, Serbia, Montenegro, 
and Rumania, and to make substantial territorial conces- 
sions to Serbia and Montenegro. Rumania was compelled 
to deliver up Bessarabia to Russia and to take in exchange 
the district near the mouth of the Danube known as the 
Dobrudja. And Turkey was pledged to pay a war indem- 
nity amounting in our money to $700,000,000, for part 
payment of which Russia took considerable territory in 
Asia Minor (the districts of Ardahan, Kars, Batum, and 
Bayazid). Since only a narrow strip across the peninsula, 
from Constantinople to the Adriatic Sea, was left to Turkey, 
Gladstone's expressed desire for the expulsion of the Turks 
from Europe had been nearly accomplished by the terms of 
this treaty. 

Knowledge of these terms awakened keen dissatisfaction 
in international political circles. Apparently the only 
states satisfied were Russia and the newly created Bulgaria. 
It was a treaty between two states made with only Slav 
interests in view, on issues which affected other races and 
other states. Each of the smaller Balkan states saw 
certain of its ambitions thwarted by some of the provisions. 

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The Serbians, dreaming of a greater Serbia that should in- 
clude all speaking the Serbian language, wished for ex- 
pansion to the south and west ; but by the treaty all terri- 
tory to the south had been incorporated into the new Bul- 
garia. Greece looked forward to the day when modem 
Greece should include all the territory of ancient Greece; 
but she saw her hopes checked by the inclusion of the north- 
ern coast of the iEgean Sea and all of central Macedonia in 
the new Bulgaria. The Rumanians were especially out- 
spoken in their opposition to the treaty, for in their eyes 
Russia had shown base ingratitude for their services at the 
siege of Plevna in forcing Rumania to give up to Russia 
the large fertile Bessarabian district in exchange for the 
low and marshy Dobrudja. Had the small states in the 
Balkan region been the only objectors, however, their pro- 
tests might have gone unheeded, for Russia's strength had 
no fear of their weakness ; but the interests of other great 
and powerful nations were also involved. It was a funda- 
mental feature of Austro-Hungarian pohcy to prevent 
Russian influence in the Balkan region. If the terms of 
the treaty of San Stef ano were to be carried out, Austrian 
expansion to the southeast would be definitely checked 
and Russian influence would in all probabihty be predomi- 
nant throughout the peninsula. And Great Britain, fore- 
seeing in Turkey's weakness Russia's opportunity to expand 
in the future toward the Mediterranean Sea, was also un- 
willing to see Turkey so reduced in territory and power. 
Furthermore, Great Britain believed that Bulgaria, with 
its large and populous territory, would be practically a vas- 
sal of Russia, thereby adding to the power of that hered- 
itary enemy. 

Austria-Hungary in her circular note of February 5, 1878, 
had taken the Jead in expressing the dissatisfaction of Europe 
with the terms of the treaty. The British government at 
once assented to the principle of a congress, and to supi)ort 
her position, voted several million pounds for armament 

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and recalled troops from India to be ready for possible 
trouble. Confronted by these demands and military prep- 
arationSy and weakened by a year of war, Russia reluctantly 
consented to submit the Treaty of San Stefano to the pro- 
posed Congress of powers. The place of meeting was to 
be Berlin. Bismarck had made a notable speech in the 
Reichstag, February 19, disclaiming any German terri- 
torial interests in the Balkan region and offering to serve 
as "honest broker" between the parties most concerned. 
On June S, 1878, the German government issued the 
/invitations: on June 13, the Congress met for its first 

Certain essential principles with respect to the changes 
in the provisions of the Treaty of San Stefano had been 
agreed upon between Russia and Great Britain before the 
actual meeting of the Congress. Count Schuvaloff (Russian 
Ambassador to Great Britain) spent the month of April 
in London trying to discover with what concessions Beacons- 
field's government would be content. Prom his conferences 
he learned that Great Britain would insist upon a reduction 
of the area of Bulgaria, an extension of the boundaries of 
Turkey, and an acknowledgment of the interests of other 
European powers in the Balkan affairs. On May 7 
Schuvaloff left London for the Russian capital to lay the 
British proposals before the Czar. On the result of his 
mission hinged the issue of peace or war. If the Czar 
should refuse to concede the changes demanded by Great 
Britain, the British fleet stood ready to take the offensive 
in behalf of Tiu'key. After a fortnight of deliberation, 
the Czar decided not to risk the gains which he had already 
made in another war. Schuvaloff returned to London and, 
on May SO, negotiated an agreement with Great Britain 
on the chief points at issue. From that time the Congress 
of BerUn was assured, but its business was restricted to a 
determination of particular boundaries rather than of gen- 
eral principles. 

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The importance of this Congress and of the Treaty signed 
thereat cannot be overestimated in the consideration of the 
course of history from 1880 to the present day. The gov- 
ernments sent their keenest diplomats to the German cap- 
ital. Disraeli (Earl of Beaconsfield) represented Great 
Britain, assisted by Lord Salisbury and Lord Odo Russell, 
the British Ambassador to Berlin ; Coimt Andr&ssy, Chan- 
cellor of Austria, was present in person ; Prince Gortchakoff 
of Russia, Alexander II's chief Minister, was accompanied 
by Coimt Schuvaloff, Russian Ambassador to England, and 
d'Oubril, Russian Ambassador to Germany; Bismarck, 
with Baron von Biilow and Prince Hohenlohe-Schillingsflirst, 
took charge of affairs affecting Prussian or German interests. 
Although no rulers were present in person, as had been the 
case in some previous European Congresses, no Congress 
had ever assembled a more notable group of European dip- 

The Congress met for its first session at 2 p.m., June 18, 
1878. Prince Hohenlohe in his Memoirs gives the following 
description of the first meeting : 

" At half -past one I drove to Bismarck's palace, formerly that 
of Radziwill. In the large room I found only Radowitz, who 
was busied with the arrangement of the necessary papers. In 
what was formerly the great ball-room a green table, shaped like 
a horseshoe, had been placed. 

" In the middle the president's seat ; on either side France, left, 
Austria, right; then England next to Austria, Italy to fVance; 
further down, Russia on the right, Turkey on the left. Opposite 
Bismarck sits Radowitz as recorder ; I on the left, Btilow on the 

" The Secretary of State soon came, and then the Imperial 
Chancellor. We went to the buffet, which was spread in an ad- 
joining room, and drank port and ate biscuits. The plenipoten- 
tiaries gradually arrived. Count Corti, a small, ugly man, who 
looked like a Japanese, with Laimay; then the Turk, an insig- 
nificant yoimg man; Count Schuvaloff; then old Gortchakoff, 

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very shaky; and, lastly, the Englishmen and the Frenchmen, 
Waddington in laced miiform. The first meeting between Lord 
Beaconsfield and Gortchakoff was interesting as a historic event. 
A move was then made into the room where the sittings were 
held. Bismarck made an introductory speech, and proposed to 
elect the officials. Andrdssy, after previous consultation with 
the other plenipotentiaries, rose and proposed the election of 
Bismarck as president. He then made proposals as regards the 
secretary and recorder, which were accepted. I then introduced 
the personnel." 

Of the details of the deliberations within the Congress, 
we know little. Interesting hints leaked out with regard 
to the rivalry between Beaconsfield and Gortchakoflf. It 
was credibly reported that in the midst of debate Gortchakoflf 
on one occasion indignantly gathered his maps together, 
folded them up, and prepared to leave the Congress; and 
on another occasion, Beaconsfield dramatically ordered a 
special train to be in readiness to take him and his staff to 
Calais. At such moments the peace of Europe trembled 
in the balance. The task of the president of the Congress, 
Bismarck, was not easy, but all parties paid tribute to the 
supreme tact with which he managed to settle the disputes 
that arose. 

Just one month to a day from the beginning of the Con- 
gress, its deliberations were finished and a treaty signed. 
One notable remarked that no one was satisfied with the 
result, which fact was excellent evidence of the fairness 
and justice with which the decisions had been* made. Bea- 
consfield on his retiu*n to London declared that he had 
gained "Peace with Honor," and Great Britain as a whole 
applauded what was popularly considered as a decided 
rebufiF to Russia. 


The Treaty of Berlin, which was completed and signed 
July IS, was a long document of sixty-fom* articles revising 

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completely the arrangements concluded in the Treaty of 
San Stefano. A statement of the principal political and 
territorial provisions of the Treaty of Berlin will show how 
materially the San Stefano Treaty was modified. (1) The 
territory, which in the San Stefano Treaty constituted the 
new Bulgaria, was divided into three parts, (a) Macedonia, 
thrust back under .the direct dominion of the Sultan, (6) 
Eastern Roumelia, given autonomy but subject to the Sultan, 
and (c) Bulgaria, given autonomy and the right freely to 
choose its own sovereign prince, but still to be considered 
a part of the Turkish realm, and to be tributary to the Sultan. 
(2) The complete independence of Serbia, Montenegro, and 
Rumania was recognized. (3) Austria-Hungary obtained 
the right to occupy and administer the two Turkish prov- 
inces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and to maintain a military 
force in the Sanjak of Novi-Bazar. (4) Russia was con- 
firmed in her possession of Bessarabia, in return for which 
Rumania received the Dobrudja. (5) Russia added to her 
territories a considerable tract in Asia Minor, including 
the Armenian districts of Ardahan, Kars, and Batum. 

A brief consideration of these provisions will show that 
they were not dictated by any sincere desire to arrive at 
a lasting and satisfactory settlement of the Balkan troubles. 
Each nation in the congress was intent upon securing for 
itself every possible advantage irrespective of the rights, 
wishes, or welfare of the Balkan people. Great Britain, 
Russia, and Austria-Hungary were all equally at fault. 
Great Britain, in fact, nine days before the congress met, 
concluded a treaty with Turkey whereby in return for the 
permission to occupy the Tmrkish island of Cyprus, she 
pledged herself to maintain, by the use of force if necessary, 
the integrity of the Sultan's remaining possessions in Asia. 
Furthermore, Great Britain was a party to the crime of 
thrusting the Macedonian Christians back under the Turkish 
yoke, because she beheved her own interests demanded a 
Turkey at the Dardanelles strong enough to repulse 

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the encroachments of Russia. Austria-Hungary's mo- 
tives in occupying Bosnia and Herzegovina were wholly 
selfish. These two districts, which were inhabited mainly 
by Serbians, had been looked upon by Serbia as the legiti- 
mate field for future annexation whereby Serbia might 
expand to the sea. Austrian occupation and administration, 
definitely intended to prevent Serbian expansion in this 
direction, forced Serbia to be a wholly inland nation, con- 
demned to send its products to the great highway of com- 
merce across a foreign territory. Russia, in spite of her 
protestations of humane motives at the beginning of the 
war, showed every inclination to profit by the result. Rus- 
sia forced Rumania to give up the rich province of Bessa- 
rabia in exch^.nge for the much less desirable Dobrudja; 
and annexed large and populous districts in Turkish Armenia, 
including the excellent port of Batum on the Black Sea. 
And lastly, all the states assembled, disregarding utterly 
the common desire of Bulgarians north of the Balkans and 
of those south to be united into one state, separated them 
into two. The short-sightedness and selfishness of the 
diplomats at Berlin bore fruit in the continuous unrest of 
later years in the Balkan region — a condition which ulti- 
mately precipitated the most terrible of European wars. 


One very important result of the proceedings of the 
Congress of Berlin was the rupture of the friendly relations 
which had since 1863 existed between Russia and Prussia 
(now become the chief state in Germany). Russia left 
the Congress feeling cheated and humiliated. After waging 
a war at great cost of men and money, she had been forced 
to give up the rightful rewards of her victory. Gortchakoff, 
the brilliant Russian Chancellor, had previously conceived 
an intense personal distaste for Bismarck, inspired, accord- 
ing to Bismarck's idea, by jealousy of the German Chan- 

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cellor's great reputation : he now declared that the Berlin 
Congress was the "darkest episode of his career" and 
ascribed his diplomatic defeat wholly to Bismarck's attitude. 
He argued that if the German representatives had supported 
him in his arrangements, he would have been able to carry 
them through triumphantly. Russians recalled how in 
186ft their country had neglected to profit during Prussia's 
war against Austria, and how in 1870 she had actually 
threatened Austria to prevent Austria from going to the 
help of France. They now accused Prussia of base in- 
gratitude. The Russian press heaped odium upon Bis- 
marck; Russian royalty who chanced to pass through 
Berlin refused to meet him; the Czar protested to the 
German Emperor against Bismarck's policy.; the Russian 
armies on the German frontier were strengthened. Although 
war was not actually threatened, the relations between the 
two countries were no longer those of the preceding period 
of "cordial understanding." 

The excuse commonly given for Bismarck in his attitude 
toward the Russian position in the Congress is that he, 
being wholly neutral in the matter, had acted in accordance 
with his conception of the rights and wrongs of the question 
at issue. Bismarck in his recollections indignantly denies 
that Russia had any reason to expect more than benevolent 
neutrality ; more than that he should act, as he had promised, 
in the role of "honest broker." "They sought with suc- 
cess to lay the guilt of the unsuccessful issue of the war on 
the German policy," Bismarck writes, "on the * disloyalty' 
of the German friend. It was a dishonest fiction. We had 
never let them expect anything but a benevolent neutrality." 
The German Chancellor had, indeed, on one occasion pro- 
fessed entire indifference to the whole Eastern Question, saying 
that " it was not worth the bones of a Pomeranian grenadier." 

Knowing the politic and unemotional quality of Bis- 
marck's diplomacy, however, we may fairly question whether 
his attitude in the Congress was as disinterested as he wished 

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people to believe. He must have realized that the con- 
flicting interests of Austria-Hungary and Russia were such 
that any permanent friendship between them was out of 
the question : it followed that he had to decide at the mo- 
ment whether to link the f ortimes of Germany for the future 
with the one or the other. It was impossible to steer a 
middle path. 

Several elements favored an aUiance with Russia : — the 
traditional friendship that had existed between Prussia- 
Germany and Russia, the gratitude which Bismarck owed 
Russia for Russia's benevoleixt neutrality in 1866 and 1870- 
1871, the tremendous actual and potential mihtary power 
of the great Slav state. Bismarck himself stated in his 
reminiscences that the Russian alliance was offered to him : 

"Even before the Congress Count ShuvaloflF touched on the 
question of a Russo-German oflFensive and defensive alliance, 
and put it to me directly. I discussed openly with him the dif- 
ficulties and prospects that the question of the alliance offered 
us, and especially the choice between Austria and Russia if the 
triple alliance of the Eastern Powers were not maintained." 

On the other hand, weighty considerations pointed to 
the greater desirability of opening a way for a close alliance 
with Austria-Hungary by supporting her cause in the Con- 
gress. To support Austria-Hungary was to align Germany, 
not only with that state, but with all the other chief powers 
of Europe, for Russia stood alone in the Congress in her 
attempt to uphold the Treaty of San Stef ano : whereas to 
support Russia would be to alienate, not only Austria- 
Hungary, but Great Britain and France as well. Bismarck 
reports that he told Shuvaloff : 

"that if we sacrificed our relations with all the other Powers 
to the firmness of our alliance with Russia, we should find ourselves, 
with our exposed geographical situation, in a dangerous depend- 
ence on Russia in the event of an acute manifestation of French 
or Austrian desire of revenge." 

And he spoke again of his distrust of the permanence of the 
Russian alliance in case of trouble : 

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''I expressed a fear that if the German policy confined its 
possibilities to the Russian alliance, and, in accordance with the 
wishes of Russia, refused all other states, Germany would with re- 
gard to Russia be in an unequal position, because the geographical 
situation and the autocratic constitution of Russia made it easier 
for her to give up the alliance than it would be for us, and because 
the maintenance of the old traditions of the Russo-Prussian al- 
liance after all rests on a single pair of eyes — that is, it depends 
on the moods of the reigning emperor of Russia." 

Furthermore, the general international situation at that 
time showed that the chief danger to Germany's position 
lay in the possibilities of an alliance between Austria-Hun- 
gary and France. Austria-Hungary had been defeated in 
1866, and France in 1870-1871 : what could be more natural 
than that they should imite to defeat and humiliate their 
common conqueror? Could Bismarck win the favor of 
Austria-Hungary by his support in the Congress and pave 
the way for an alliance, he would postpone indefinitely 
the formation of a menacing Austro-French coalition. In 
favor of an alliance with Austria-Hungary, too, was the 
fact that the reigning houses in the two coimtries were of 
the same blood. Could Austria-Himgary be induced to 
forget the war of 1866, the two Germanic empires could be 
leagued together in bonds not woven alone of political 
expediency, but of ties of a common race and language. 
It was a more natural alliance than that between German 
and Slav. The long close relations of the days of the Holy 
Roman Empire might be revived, with the difference that 
Germany and Austria-Hungary would stand side by side, 
equal in rights and privileges, with a united front against 
all foes. 

Some such considerations as these we have noted weighed 
with Bismarck in determining his attitude in the Congress. 
He undoubtedly hoped, however, that by adroit manipula- 
tion he could favor Austria-Hungary, and at the same time 
retain the friendship with Russia. The suspicious and 
exacting jealousy of the Russian Chancellor, Gortchakoff, 

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balked him. He was quickly made to feel that he had 
forfeited for Germany the friendship of Russia. 

i. The Dual Alliance 

The keen resentment aroused in official circles in Russia 
by Gortchakoff's recital of Bismarck's attitude in the Con- 
gress aroused Bismarck to the necessity of pressing forward 
the negotiations for the alliance with Austria-Hungary. 
It was possible that Russia would attack before he could 
form this alliance ; in such an event, his position was very 
dangerous, for Russia could approach either Austria-Hun- 
gary or France with excellent chance for assistance in an 
attack against Germany. Fortimately for Bismarck's plans 
he found Andr4ssy, the new premier in Austria-Hungary, 
willing to accept his advances. After relatively brief nego- 
tiations, the two states concluded the treaty of the Dual 
Alliance, October 7, 1879. The pertinent provisions, pub- 
lished to the world in 1888, were as follows : 

"1. Should, contrary to the hope and against the sincere wish 
of the two High Contracting Parties, one of the two Empires be 
attacked by Russia, the High Contracting Parties are bound to 
stand by each other with the whole of the armed forces of the 
Empires and, in consequence thereof, only to conclude peace 
jointly and in agreement. 

" 2. Should one of the High Contracting Parties be attacked by 
another Power, the other High Contracting Party hereby binds 
itself, not only not to stand by the aggressor of its High Ally, but 
to observe at least an attitude of benevolent neutrality towards its 
High Co-contractor. 

"If, however, in such a case the attacking Power should be 
supported by Russia, either in the form of active cooperation 
or by military measures menacing to the party attacked, the 
obligation defined in Clause I of reciprocal help with the entire 
armed strength comes immediately into force in this case also, 
and the war will then also be waged jointly by the two High Con- 
tracting Parties until the joint conclusion of peace." 

By the provisions of this alliance, Bismarck believed that 
he had again won for Germany a security in foreign aflfairs. 

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Should the irritation in Russia increase to the point of war, 
Germany was certain of an ally; should France yield to 
her desire for revenge and attack Germany, Austro-Hun- 
garian neutrality was assured; should France in a war 
against Germany be aided by Russia* Austro-Hungarian 
assistance was pledged. 

ii. The Triple Alliance 

To make assurance doubly sure, Bismarck desired a. third 
power in the alliance. Since Russia was at the time def- 
initely aUenated, and France bitterly hostile, he tiu'ned 
toward Italy. In that country the traditional friendship 
with France had been broken by the persistence of the 
French government under Napoleon in supporting the claims 
of the Papacy to temporal power, and the seeds of good 
relations with Germany sown by the alliance during the 
war of 1866 against Austria. Bismarck's machinations to 
kill all remaining friendship in Italy for France and to draw 
Italy into the German-Austrian alliance illustrate the devi- 
ous ways by means of which great statesmen sometimes 
work to accomplish their ends. 

Italy desired colonial development on the Mediterranean 
coast of Africa, especially in Tunis and Tripoli. Tunis, 
particularly, was desirable, for it approached Italian terri- 
tory (Sicily) at the narrowest point of the Mediterranean 
and would in the hands of a hostile power be a continual 
menace. Under the circumstances it might be thought that 
the simplest way to gain Italy's friendship and adherence 
would be to assist her in gaining Tunis. Bismarck, how- 
ever, did not oflfer this assistance. He well knew that 
France, which already possessed the neighboring country 
of Algeria, coveted Tunis and was making representations 
to certain of the great powers to allow the extension of 
her power over that country. Bismarck is said to have 
volimteered secretly his cordial consent to France's plans, 
believing that such consent might do a little toward helping 

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France to forget the war of 1870, and feeling certain that 
Italy, which could know nothing of his consent, would be 
thrown by the result into the German-Austrian alliance. 
All proceeded according to his plan. Taking advantage 
of the many pretexts for intervention in Tunis, France 
sent an expedition there in 1881 and quickly established a 
French protectorate. Feeling rose high in Italy : the tradi- 
tional hostility toward Austria was forgotten in the new rage 
against France. While Italian statesmen were in this mood, 
Bismarck foimd it easy to persuade them that their best 
interests lay in an alliance with the central Germanic 
powers. A year later, 1882, Italy yielded to his argu- 
ments. The famous Triple Alliance was formed. 

Although the provisions of this alliance have never been 
made public, their tenor is undoubtedly the same as that of 
the original alliance between Germany and Austria. The 
Triple Alliance at once became the chief factor in inter- 
national politics in Europe. Of this Triple Alliance Ger- 
many was acknowledgedly the most powerful member, 
and in Germany Bismarck was in absolute control of the 
coimtry*s policies. The alliance included territory through 
the center of Europe from the Baltic to the Mediterranean, 
supporting more than 100,000,000 people in states main- 
taining a constantly mobilized military power of 2,000,000. 
Bismarck in the formation of the alliance had carried his 
dependence upon the value of "blood and iron'* to its 
logical conclusion. It was certain that, in any international 
issues, Germany's decision, backed by 2,000,000 well-trained 
and well-equipped soldiers, would weigh heavily in the final 
reckoning. Bismarck, by virtue of his position at the head 
of the most powerful member of this great alliance, exercised 
a supreme control over the diplomacy of Europe. 

Although Bismarck's policy, at this critical period suc- 
ceeded in establishing Germany as the most powerful state 
in Europe, it had a baneful influence upon the course of sub- 
sequent international relations. Since the fall of Napoleon 

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the powers of Europe had gradually become accustomed 
to decide conflicting interests by formal deliberations in 
Congresses rather than by hasty appeal to war. As a result 
of these Congresses and of the treaties concluded therein, 
a large and important mass of decisions of a judicial natiu*e 
had been accumulated whereby it might be hoped to avoid 
war in the future. The effect of Bismarck's Triple Alliance 
was to inject into international issues mere military force 
as a deciding element. Other powers would inevitably be 
led to fear that in future Congresses issues would be settled, 
not according to the justice of the respective claims or 
according to the provisions of the treaties in force, but 
according to the selfish wishes of the members of the Triple 
Alliance. The rule of force would take precedence over the 
rule of law and justice; military strength would replace 
treaty agreements and European Congresses as the court 
of final appeal. 

Again, the formation of the Triple Alliance was in itself 
a challenge to the other nations not included therein, to 
form an opposing alliance. The other states in Europe 
were certain to feel that, in order to resist probable "bully- 
ing** by Germany and the Triple Alliance, it was necessary 
for them to combine in an alliance with equal or greater 
military resources. Russia, France, and Great Britain, who 
stood alone at this time, could not fail ultimately to be 
impressed with the advantages that would accrue to each 
of them by reconciling their differences and pooling their 
interests. We shall see that, a decade later, an alliance 
was actually formed between two of these great powers 
and the way was made easy for the cooperation of the third. 

And finally, with the existence of two great opposing 
alliances in Europe, followed inevitably a rivalry in arma- 
ments. Each group would strain every nerve to equip 
itself so thoroughly that, should war arise out of any of the 
conflicting interests, it would be able by force to gain a de- 
cision in its favor. The mighty military preparations of 

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the twenty years preceding the great war that broke out in 
1914 sprang directly from the existence of the two hostile 
alliances in Europe. Although each aUiance was nominally 
formed for defense alone, the statesmen at the head of each 
could not allow its military forces to fall behind those of 
its opponent. The period of great armaments, with their 
appalling expense to the world, dates from the formation 
of the two powerful opposing alliances in Europe. 

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The next decade of European history, from 1880 to 1890, 
was not marked by any significant outward changes in 
international relations.^ Although there was one small 
war between two of the Balkan states, and although at 
times intense ill-will was excited among the great powers — 
as between Great Britain and France over British activities 
in Egypt, between Russia and Austria-Hungary over the 
Balkan situation, and between Germany and France at the 
time of the Boulanger madness — the decade was peaceful. 
The outstanding feature in international politics continued 
to be the Triple Alliance. This alliance, of course, insured 
Germany's position so long as conditions on the continent 
remained the same. Bismarck, however, realizing the 
dangers of the formation of an opposing alliance, used every 
resource of diplomacy to keep Russia and France apart. 
He connived at Jules Ferry's ambitious colonial enter- 
prises, for he hoped that France might in these colonial 
undertakings forget Alsace and Lorraine, and that the great 
expense and complications resulting from the acquisition 
of colonies would so embarrass France that she would be 
unable to threaten his own country. In the case of Russia, 
he ordered the German press to flatter that nation at every 
opportunity; he intimated to Alexander HI that monar- 

' The entranoe of Italy into alliance with Germany and Austria-Hungary 
(1882), forming the TUple Alliance, has already been mentioned. 


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chical Germany would be a more suitable and i)owerfu] 
ally than republican France ; he . expelled from Berlin 
persons suspected of hostility to the Czar; he arranged 
for mutual visits between the royal families; and in 
1884 he brought together the sovereigns of Austria- 
Hungary, Grermany, and Russia in an attempt to renew 
the cordial understanding of the period previous to the 
Turkish war. 

It is curious to note how, just as soon as Bismarck desired 
peace in Europe, peace followed. After he had been in- 
strumental in bringing on three wars — the Danish of 1864, 
the Austro-Prussian of 1866, and the Franco-Prussian of 
1870 — and had thus established the German Empire 
in the foremost place on the continent, his interest in pro- 
moting war promptly ceased. Subsequent to 1870, Ger- 
many became, so long as Bismarck remained chancellor 
and minister of foreign affairs, the strongest factor in the 
maintenance of peace in Europe. Although he could not 
prevent the Russo-Turkish war in 1877-1878 — which, 
indeed, was waged on issues that lay beyond the sphere 
of German interests at the time — he was instrumental at 
the Congress of Berlin in preventing its results from involv- 
ing other of the great powers in Europe. As his policy 
of ** blood and iron" was the chief cause of the wars 
from his accession to power in 1862 to the establish- 
ment of the Empire, so his policy of peace was largely 
responsible for peace among the great powers from 1871 
to 1890. 

During this decade of peace, then, we may trace the 
course of internal developments in certain of the more 
important States and indicate, where necessary, the bear- 
ing of such developments upon the general European polit- 
ical situation. We shall see that, though outwardly 
international relations did not alter, certain changes in 
domestic conditions in individual states paved the way for 
the momentous events of the decades following. 


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A. Great Britain 

With Disraeli as premier, the Conservative party had 
made a creditable record in the years of its power following 
1874. Disraeli had proposed as the platform of his party 
"the Constitution, the Empire, and Social Reform": he 
and his associates had tried to live up to this platform. In 
domestic legislation, the Conservatives carried through 
sound measures improving agricultiu*al conditions, codified 
various acts and regulations on labor in the notable Factory 
and Workshops Act of 1878, attacked the problem of 
properly housing the poor in the Artisans' Dwellings Acts 
of 1875, and introduced new standards of safety for ships 
and sailors by the Merchant Shipping Act of 1876. The 
most conspicuous achievement of the ministry, however, 
was its success in furthering the imperial idea and in reestab- 
lishing Great Britain's prestige in continental politics. 
The purchase of the Suez Canal shares in 1875, and the 
assumption of the title Empress of India by the Queen 
in the following year were features of this imperialism. 
The diplomacy of Beaconsfield (Disraeli was elevated to 
the peerage in 1876) in the troubled period preceding and 
during the Russo-Turkish war, and his influence in the 
Congress of Berlin, signalized the new attitude of Great 
Britain in international affairs. All Britons thrilled at 
the supposed triumph of British diplomacy expressed in 
Beaconsfield's report that he h^d brought back "Peace 
with Honor." 

In the years inunediately following the Congress of Berlin, 
however, Beaconsfield's prestige and that of his party were 
severely undermined. In distant India, Great Britain 
had become involved in a war against the Afghans over the 
right to force the Amir of Afghanistan to harbor a British 
representative. Even though the British were finally 
successful, the triviality of the cause of the war, the reverses 
suffered at its outset, and its great expense, weakened 

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public confidence in the Conservative policy. And again, 
in 1879, the British government determined to crush the 
Zulus, who were troubUng the recently annexed Transvaal 
region in South Africa. The very beginning of this cam- 
paign was marked by the massacre of a British force at 
Isandhlwana (January 22, 1879), for which of course the 
government was held responsible. Add to these foreign 
mishaps a disastrous harvest in 1879, a temporary industrial 
and commercial depression . throughout the British Isles, 
and a campaign of scathing denunciation undertaken by 
Giadstone in a series of notable speeches, and it can be seen 
that the government stood little chance of winning the elec- 
tions of April, 1880. In those elections the Liberals were 
returned to power with a majority of 41; Beaconsfield 
resigned ; and Gladstone again became prime minister. 

With one brief interval Gladstone remained in power 
for six years, from 1880 to 1886. His premiership marked 
an about face in the foreign policies of Great Britain. 
Whereas Disraeli had emphasized the imperial position of 
Great Britain, and had insisted upon the importance of 
British interests in world politics being appreciated and 
respected by the continental states, Gladstone desired to 
concentrate all his attention upon domestic problems. 
He believed that the national welfare would best be fostered 
by a policy of i>eace and non-interference abroad and re- 
forms at home. Hence, this great power, which had been 
so eflSciently represented at Berlin by the picturesque 
Beaconsfield, now apparently desired nothing better than 
to withdraw wholly from international politics so far as it 
was possible to do so. 

In Gladstone's achievements only three points of special 
political significance need to be noted : — first, the passage 
of a reform bill extending the suffrage ; second, the emer- 
gence of Irish Home Rule as an issue of first importance 
in British politics in recent times; and third, his policy 
with relation to Egypt. 

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i. Parliamentary Reform Bill 

Although the previous reform bills in Great Britain 
(1832 and 1867) had eactended the franchise liberally to 
members of the middle classes and to householders in the 
boroughs (i.e. incorporated cities and towns), they had done 
little for those who lived in the counties. Hence the people 
in the counties, mainly those living in small villages or on 
farms, were at a disadvantage compared with persons of 
a similar station in the boroughs. Gladstone's bill, in- 
troduced and passed in 1884, was intended to remedy the 
injustice of these conditions. It extended the chief pro- 
visions of the borough franchise to apply to conditions in 
the counties, with the result that it doubled the number 
of county voters and increased the total electorate about 
two millions. Accompanying the reform bill. was an act, 
passed the following year (1885), redistributing the seats 
in the House pf Commons. The general principle was 
laid down that the number of borough and county repre- 
sentatives depended upon the population — one member for 
constituencies between 15,000 and 50,000 ; two members for 
those between 50,000 and 165,000 ; three members for those 
having 165,000, and one more member for each additional 
50,000 inhabitants. The total membership of the House 
was increased from 652 to 670. 

ii. Irish Home Rule 

Another issue of importance in Gladstone's riiinistry 
from 1880 to 1886 was the Irish question. This was not 
by any means a new problem, for the government of Ire- 
land had been a continual trouble to the British parliament 
since the first attempts at conquest in the twelfth century. 
Conditions in British politics at this period, however, for 
the first time in modern years gave Irish patriots a chance 
to advance their Home Rule arguments with a chance of 

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English treatment of Ireland is a long tragedy of mis- 
understanding and oppression. Great Britain, endowed 
with colonies stretching around the world, boastful of her 
success in colonial government, has failed dismally in the 
affairs of the island at her doors. By the cruel oppression 
of six centuries of revolts, by alienating the land from the 
Irish and handing it over to the English and Scotch, by 
hostility to the religion of the mass of the people, and by 
colonizing an important section of the country (Ulster 
province) with Scotch Presbyterians, the English have sown 
the seeds of an ineradicable hatred in the hearts of the 
Irish. At the beginning of the nineteenth century, the Eng- 
lish by flagrant bribery forced the Irish parliament to ap- 
prove an Act of Union (1801), whereby thereafter the Irish 
parliament was abolished and only one hundred Irish mem- 
bers admitted to the British parliament. In that parlia- 
ment, of course, the few Irishmen were swallowed up and 
lost. Their protests were unheeded and their votes carried 
no weight. The one body through which Irish grievances 
might have been expressed was swept away by the Act of 
Union. Ireland relapsed into sullen wretchedness. 

The Irish patriots had to wait long for an opportunity 
to retrieve their fortunes. The successive reform bills and 
redistribution of seats in parliament, however, held out 
the prospect of a time in the future when their group might 
hold the balance of power and exact concessions. In 1880, 
when the Liberals overthrew Beaconsfield and Gladstone 
became prime minister, the Irish party had a solid body of 
sixty-one patriots in the House of Commons, led by one of 
the most adroit Irishmen of modern times, Parnell, and 
determined to use every opportunity afforded by parlia- 
mentary procedure to gain an advantage for Ireland. 

We may believe in justice to Gladstone that at this 
juncture it was not only political expediency, but a 
sense of right that led him to take steps to allay the unrest 
in Ireland. One manifest injustice was the condition of 

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land tenure. After the rebellions of previous centuries, 
large parts of Ireland had been confiscated and given out 
of hand in great estates to Englishmen. These English 
landlords, who seldom visited their estates yet drew large 
incomes from the rentals, were looked upon by the Irish 
as usurpers, and their bailiffs or agents as tyrants. Yet 
the Irishman's sole livelihood was gained from the land, 
so that he was at the mercy of these landlords and their 
bailiffs. He had to take the land on whatever terms, 
however unjust or exorbitant, the bailiffs might impose. 
To remedy the injustice of this condition, Gladstone in- 
troduced a Land Act in 1881 outlining a policy of "Three 
F's," as it was kno¥m : — Free Sale, Fixity of Tenure, and 
Fair Rent. By the Free Sale clause, tenants were authorized 
to sell their occupation interests; by Fixity of Tenure, 
the tenants were secured from eviction except for non- 
payment of rent; by Fair Rent, tenants were enabled to 
have their rental fixed by a newly created Land Commission 

It was a noble effort to alleviate conditions in Ireland, 
but was wholly unsatisfactory to Pamell and his followers. 
They sought, not partial remedies, but a complete change 
in system; they demanded national self-government and 
an unconditional liberation of the land for the people — 
in other words. Home Rule and the restoration of con- 
fiscated land. They used every effort to gain their ends. 
In Parliament, they resorted to methods of obstruction, 
such as dilatory motions, demands for roll calls, and end- 
less speeches ; in Ireland, their followers resorted to violence 
to emphasize their dissatisfaction. In the Parliament 
which met in 1886, the Irish nationalist members increased 
to eighty-six, and held the balance of power. 

On April 8, 1886, Gladstone introduced a Home Rule 
Bill, providing for an Irish Parliament with an Irish ministry 
empowered to manage Irish affairs, but without power on 
questions affecting the Crown, the army and navy, foreign 

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policy, colonial affairs, or the endowment or establishment 
of any religion. The Bill sought to satisfy the Irish de- 
mands without infringing upon British sovereignty over 
affairs of the national government and without endangering 
the position of the Protestants in Ireland. 

This Bill split Gladstone's party in Parliament. A 
strong group terming itself Liberal-unionist — i.e. liberal 
in politics, but determined to maintain the union between 
England and Ireland — seceded and prepared to vote 
with the opposition. After long and bitter debate the Bill 
was defeated on its second reading, Jime 8, by a vote of 
34S to 313. Gladstone dissolved Parliament and appealed 
to the coimtry. His party was defeated, the elections return- 
ing 316 Conservatives and 78 Liberal-Unionists against 
191 Liberals and 85 Home Rulers. Gladstone immediately 
resigned and was succeeded as prime minister by Lord 

iii. Egyptian Policy 

Combined with the failure of his Irish Home Rule policy 
in defeating Gladstone in 1886 was the disgrace which 
attended his policy in Egyptian affairs. Nothing illus- 
strates more vividly his narrowness of vision than his in- 
capacity to appreciate the importance of Egypt to the 
British Empire and to deal effectually with the issues raised 
there during his ministry.. 

Disraeli's purchase of the Suez Canal shares had given 
Great Britain a new and special interest in Egypt. Hence, 
when the Egyptian public debt began to increase at an 
alarming rate, and the payment of interest to the British 
bondholders was jeopardized — the debt increased from 
$16,000,000 in 1863 to $470,000,000 in 1876 — special 
commissioners were sent out to Egypt to examine into the 
finances of the country and to submit a report thereon. 
As a result of their report, describing the country as suffer- 
ing "from the ignorance, dishonesty, waste, and extrava- 

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gance of the East . . . and at the same time from the vast 
expense caused by hasty and inconsiderate endeavors to 
adopt the civilization of the West," the British and French 
governments formed a joint Commission (May 2, 1876) 
with functions which were later expanded to include the 
administration of all the finances of the coimtry. Captain 
Evelyn Baring (raised to the peerage as Earl Cromer in 
1901) became the British member. In 1879 the extrava- 
gances of Khedive Ismail had become so unbearable that 
the Powers forced the Sultan, whose subject he was, to 
depose him and to appoint as his successor his son Tewfik. 

The diflSculty of the Egyptian problem was increased 
by the disaflfection throughout the coimtry, especially 
within the army. Rebellion broke out in 1881. In June 
the rebels attacked the European population at Alexandria 
and massacred fiifty persons. Thousands of Christian for- 
eigners fled from the country. The necessity for military 
intervention was manifest. 

Great Britain invited France to join with her in joint 
intervention, but France, apparently suspicious of her 
motives and desiring to take advantage of Egyptian anarchy 
to extend her own boundaries in Egypt, refused. Great 
Britain thereupon acted alone. In a few months the well- 
trained British troops (including a contingent of natives 
from India) dispersed the Egyptian rebels in northern 
Egypt, and reestablished the authority of the Khedive. So 
far the British government had acted with promptitude and 

The problem actually became more involved, however, 
after the suppression of the rebellion. If British troops 
were removed, no security existed for the Khedive against 
a new rebellion; yet to leave British troops there was 
certain to lead other Powers to suspect Great Britain's 
motives in the country. After long delay the policy of 
the government was announced by a member of the ministry 
in a speech to the House of Lords, December, 1882 : 

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"We shall not keep our troops in Egypt any longer than is 
necessary; but it would be an act of treachery to ourselves, to 
Egypt, and to Europe if we withdrew them without having a 
certainty — or until there is reasonable expectation — of a stable, 
a permanent, and a beneficial government being established in 

A few months later a new revolt broke out in the vast 
district of southern Egypt known as the Egyptian Soudan. 
Egyptian troops commanded by British oflScers were sent 
south (September, 1883) against the rebels, and were de- 
feated and cut to pieces (November, 1883). Two months 
later the British government sent out General Charles 
Gordon, formerly governor-general of the Soudan, to 
Khartum to report on the situation. When he arrived in 
Egypt, the Khedive appointed him again governor-general 
of the Soudan, the British cabinet approved the appoint- 
ment, and he went into the disaffected district in that official 

Gordon reached Khartum in safety, but within a few 
weeks was closely besieged there by the forces of the 
rebels. His peril was evident, but Gladstone, involved in 
problems of parliamentary reform and projects for allaying 
or suppressing the unrest in Ireland, delayed the sending 
of assistance. March 25, 1884, Queen Victoria telegraphed 
to Lord Hartington, a member of the ministry : 

" It is alarming ; General Gordon is in danger ; you are bound 
to try and save him. Surely Indian troops might go from Aden 
and could bear climate though British cannot. You have in- 
curred fearful responsibility." 

Still weeks and months passed without a decision. Gordon 
maintained himself with the utmost difficulty against the 
hordes of Arabs who surrounded the town. At last, moved 
by the threat of members of his ministry to resign unless 
something were done at once, Gladstone in August asked 
for a small appropriation ($1,600,000) "to undertake 
operations for the relief of General Gordon should they 

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become necessary." But the expedition which then set out to 
fight its way to Khartum arrived too late. January 26, 1885, 
the Arabs successfully stormed the town and put to the sword 
its inhabitants, among them the brave General Gordon. 

The grief and anger of the coimtry over the tragedy of 
Gordon's death were intense. Victoria sent a passionate 
telegram to the prime minister — "it was too fearful to 
consider that the fall of Khartum might have been pre- 
vented and many precious lives saved by earlier action." 
The House of Lords passed a vote of censure of the govern- 
ment by 189 to 68. 

The hesitating and vacillating policy of Gladstone con- 
tinued even after Gordon's death. With the country 
aroused, it would have been possible to send a strong 
force at once against the rebels, but after many delays 
Gladstone decided to withdraw the British troops which 
had penetrated to a point near Khartum. By the middle 
of the summer these troops had left for northern Egypt, 
and the Soudan was left for a dozen years in the hands of 
the rebels. 

The pitiful spectacle of an English governor-general 
being abandoned to his fate among hordes of rebel infidels 
played no small part in Gladstone's defeat at the polls in 

iv. The Salisbury Ministry 

The Irish Question was perforce the chief issue before 
the Salisbury ministry when it took oflSce in 1886.^ When 
Lord Salisbury had been in the opposition in parliament, 
he had advocated coercion in Lreland : he was now in a posi- 
tion to put this policy into eflfect. Stringent measures 
were at once adopted, bish nationalists were imprisoned ; 
troops eflfectually quelled outbreaks, belaud was pacified, 
but not conciliated. 

1 Lord Salisbury had been prime minister for a few months in 1885, following 
the resignation of Gladstone, but could not command a majority in the Commons 
and resigned. Gladstone again took the premiership over the elections. 

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At the same time Lord Salisbury introduced some con- 
structive measures in the endeavor to improve the Irish 
conditions. In 1891 the parliament passed a Bill by which 
the government obligated itself to purchase land from the 
landowners for the peasant, advancing the whole cost and 
receiving payment therefor from the peasant in annual 
installments extending over *a period of fifty years. Under 
this Bill, the tenant would actually pay in his installments 
less than he had previously paid as rent, and would at the 
end of fiifty years be absolute owner of his property. Within 
the next five years, some 35,000 tenants took advantage 
of the provisions of this Bill to acquire their land. 

Another feature of Lord Salisbury's premiership was his 
establishment of the principle of a two-power naval standard. 
In 1889 he gained from the parliament the approval of, and 
funds for, an enormous increase in the British navy. An 
average of ten capital' ships a year was to be added to the 
navy during the next seven years, at an estimated total 
expense of more than $100,000,000, and the navy was 
henceforth to be maintained the equal of any other two 
navies in the world united. The importance of this naval 
policy in view of later international developments was very 

v. Death of Disraeli 

Before passing from British affairs of this decade we 
should note the death of Disraeli, Earl of Beaconsfield, on 
April 19, 1881. He had been in retirement since his defeat 
at the elections the preceding year. At his death the full 
measure of public esteem was for the first time revealed. 
This "charlatan," "mystery man," "Jew adventurer," 
as his opponents contemptuously termed him, had captured 
the hearts of the English people. Queen Victoria herself 
placed a wreath upon his coffin and caused to be erected 
in the chiu^ch where he was buried a tablet bearing the 
following inscription written by herself : 

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" To the dear and honored memory of Benjamin, Earl of Bea- 
consfield, this memorial is placed by his grateful Sovereign and 
friend Victoria R. I. 'Kings love him that speaketh right.* '* 

Since his death his reputation has steadily grown. He, 
and he alone, is creditied with the regeneration of the im- 
perial idea in Great Britain. He was a man with a vision 
reaching far beyond the narrow limits of his home islands 
and with an imagination grasping the possibilities of the 
future. He left as an heritage to Great Britain the con- 
ception of a world policy which, however neglected during 
the years immediately following, gradually became the lead- 
ing principle of later statesmen. 

vi. Eflfect of Great Britain's Policy of Splendid Isolation 
upon the International Situation 

. The absorption of English interests in domestic con- 
cerns during this decade, and the resumption of the former 
policy of "splendid isolation," had indirectly an eflfect 
upon the general continental situation. In the Congress 
of Berlin, Beaconsfield had signalized dramatically Great 
Britain's entrance into the field of European politics, and had 
indicated that henceforth Great Britain would be a factor 
to be considered in any political or territorial readjustments. 
Had British diplomacy continued in this course, the diplo- 
mats of the continental states would have been forced 
to revise their plans and to weigh carefully the efifect of 
each of their policies upon British opinion. Especially 
would Great Britain's participation in European affairs 
have affected Bismarck, for he would have had to reckon 
with another possible ally of Prance and enemy of Germany. 
The practical withdrawal of Great Britain from the inter- 
national arena made Bismarck's task easier. British power 
and British opinion — though carefully watched, of course, 
for signs of change — could to all intents and purposes 
be disregarded. 

Bismarck once remarked that had he served his country 

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as ill as Gladstone had served Great Britain, he would be 
ashamed to look his fellows in the face. His thought prob- 
ably was that Gladstone, with an opportunity to raise 
Great Britain to a pinnacle of unassailable international 
supremacy, had frittered away his strength in domestic 
problems of relatively Uttle importance. If Bismarck could 
take — as he did — the second-rate Prussia and elevate it 
to the central position in the most powerful state of the 
greatest alliance in Europe, what might he have done had 
fate assigned him to the premiership of Great Britain, 
with its position already established and its empire reaching 
aroimd the world ? 

B, France 

In France, the decade between 1880 and 1890, following 
the decisive victory of the republicans at the polls in 1879 
and the election of the republican Gr6vy as president, 
was marked by the disturbed conditions which would natu- 
rally result from the readjustment of political groups. Gr6vy 
conducted himself in what he beUeved to be the proper 
manner for the president of a parliamentary repubUc. 
Whereas MacMahon had declared strong personal policies 
and had attempted to influence the decisions of the parlia- 
ment, Gr6vy abstained from all such exercise of authority. 
He neither proclaimed his policy nor attempted to interfere 
in the conduct of affairs. He left all such activities to his 
ministers. The presidency thus soon lost suggestion of 
monarchical power. Gravy's example was followed by his 

i. Domestic Politics 

The abstention of the President of the Republic from 
interference in party politics in France threw the conduct 
of the government into the hands of the ministers, who 
were wholly dependent upon the legislative body for their 
support. France thus had a purely parliamentary govern- 

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ment. The difBculties of carrying through a consistent 
policy over any considerable length of time under this 
system quickly became evident. The legislative body was 
exceedingly suspicious of any of its ministers who gave the 
appearance of assuming undue authority, and deposed 
them from office by the simple expedient of refusing legis- 
lative support. For example, when Gambetta, long one 
of the most prominent and popular republicans in France, 
headed a ministry in November of 1881, surrounded him- 
self in office with his personal devotees, arranged a tri- 
umphal entry into his native town, and theatrically ad- 
dressed the chamber in a kind of "speech from the throne," 
he quickly lost all his popularity and the support of the 
legislative, and had to resign three months later (January, 
1882). The longest-Uved ministry, that of Jules Ferry, 
endured only a Uttle over two years (February, 1883 to 
May, 1885). Between 1880 and 1887, ten dififerent ministers 
rose and fell. Conditions fostered the activities of poli- 
ticians rather than the development of statesmen, and few 
important constructive legislative measures were passed. 
In 1887 Gr^vy, his power weakened by a scandal in which 
his son-in-law was implicated, resigned, and Camot, like- 
wise a republican, was elected president. 

The next few years were marked by the climax of the 
Boulangist movement. General Boulanger was a dashing 
figure, usually pictured on horseback, and was well qualified 
to draw the attention of the people. He became the hero 
of the self-styled "patriots," who believed that all govern- 
mental poUcies and activities should be directed to the sole 
end of success in war and of revenge against Germany. 
Boulanger was made Minister of War in January of 1886, 
and at once made himself notorious by his outspoken 
sympathy with the army, especially with the common 
soldier, and by his insinuations that under his leadership 
Alsace and Lorraine might "he recaptured. He controlled 
a number of newspapers in France, through which he was 

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able to keep himself and his policies before the people. He 
rapidly gained adherents from various disaffected political 
elements. His constructive program was vague: he an- 
nounced it in three phrases — Dissolution, Revision, Con- 
stituent Assembly -^ implying the dissolution of the exist- 
ing legislature and the election of an assembly which should 
so revise the constitution as to provide for a single legisla- 
tive chamber and an executive independent of that chamber. 
His party, calling itself the RetrUionist or National party, 
conducted a vigorous and novel campaign to keep him before 
the people. Wherever in all Prance a vacancy in the exist- 
ing chambers was to be filled. General Boulanger was 
nominated; posters and portraits of the candidate were 
spread broadcast through the district ; biographies were dis- 
tributed to all the electors ; and hired claques applauded each 
reference to him in the campaign oratory. In five months of 
1888 he was elected deputy for six different constituencies ; 
and in January of 1889, when he stood for the Paris seat, he 
triumphed by a majority of 240,000 to 165,000. 

In the face of this agitation and these remarkable suc- 
cesses, the government finally took strong measures, for his 
successes not only threatened the overthrow of the existing 
government, but were responsible for a serious crisis in the 
relations of Prance with Germany. The ministry, there- 
fore, introduced and succeeded in passing a law making 
it ill^al for any person to offer himself as a candidate for 
the national legislature in more than one district. In 
February, 1889, the Assembly summoned the General to 
appear before the Senate to answer to the charge of con- 
spiracy against the safety of the state. If Boulanger had 
possessed at the moment the energy and courage to attempt 
a coup for the control of the government, he might have 
succeeded; but he failed to meet the situation. Alarmed 
by the summons, he fled to Belgium. In his absence he 
was condemned by the court. Two years later, 1891, he 
committed suicide. 

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The republican government emerged from the crisis 
in a much stronger position than before. The Boulangist 
movement, with the flight of "the man on horseback," 
collapsed. The repubUcans of all shades of opinion, uniting 
in the general elections of 1889 to oppose the enemies of 
the parUamentary system, carried 366 seats against 210. 
Their victory in these elections proved the strength of the 
Republic and served to discredit thoroughly its opponents. 
Their victory fiu'ther had a marked effect in impressing 
upon foreign powers the stability of the existing government. 

It might be thought that, with ministry succeeding minis- 
try in quick succession, — fourteen ministries in the dec- 
ade from 1880 to 1890 — no continuity in policy would 
be possible. The evil eflPects of the continual changes of 
ministry have in France been oflPset, however, by two facts : 
first, that the successive ministries have often contained 
leading persons of previous ministries ; and second, that a 
change in ministry has not resulted in a change in the polit- 
ical principles of the ministry. Thus all the ministries 
of the decade were republican ministries, pledged to uphold 
and maintain the existing form of government. And 
thus, certain of the leading ministers, as Ferry, Falli^es, 
Tirard, and Coch6ry, retained their portfolios, or were 
given other portfolios, in successive ministries. Louis 
Coch6ry was Minister of Posts and Telegraphs in all the 
successive ministries from 1881 to 1886; Charles Tirard 
was Minister of Commerce and Agricultiu'e in the minis- 
tries of 1881 and 1882, and Minister of Finance in the min- 
istries from 1883 to 1885. The fall of a ministry was more 
often determined by the personal rivalries of leaders than, 
as for example in parliamentary government in England, 
by the overthrow of one party by another with different 
poUcies and totally different personnel. Whereas the fall 
of a ministry in Great Britain meant a complete change 
in all the portfolios and usually a complete change in policy, 
in France it meant simply the change in the person of the 

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premier and in a few of the portfolios without necessarily 
any change in general policy. 

ii. Foreign Policy : Colonial Expansion 

The most important acts in foreign policy consisted in 
the acquisition, under the leadership of Jules Ferry, of a 
great colonial empire. This policy was encouraged by 
Bismarck, for he foresaw that France would thus be diverted 
from the obsession of a war of revenge ; that the enormous 
cost of taking and developing colonies would weaken France 
financially; and that France would thus inevitably be 
brought into conflict with other powers having colonial 
ambitions. Ferry, on his part, had visions of the broaden- 
ing of national interest : he realized the importance of new 
markets for French goods; he saw that in the rivalry of 
the great states France must gain her share of colonial 
territory. Thus under his influence France estabUshed a 
protectorate over Tunis, and gained a foothold in Tonkin, 
Madagascar, and the French Congo. Although his policy 
entailed enormous expenses, threw Italy temporarily into 
the alliance with Austria and Germany (the Triple AlUance), 
aroused the suspicions of England, and created strong 
political opposition in France, it may be defended in the 
light of history by the fact that it raised France to a fa- 
vorable position as a colonial power during the important 
negotiations of the following decade. Between 1890 and 
1900 the most important colonial treaties were made: 
France, wholly as a result of Ferry's policy, was an indis- 
pensable signatory to every treaty. By virtue of her colo- 
nies, as well as by virtue of her size, power, and material 
resources, she took her place among the greatest nations of 
the modem world. 

C. Russia 

In Russia the results of the Congress of Berlin were 
heralded by the malcontents as the crowning humiliation 

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in a long chain of mistaken policies. The Edict of Emanci- 
pation had favored the landowners and nobility, so that 
the burden of expense of the peasant under the new dis- 
pensation was actually in many cases worse than under 
the old. The Czar, not a strong character, had naturally 
succumbed to the reactionary influences of the court circles, 
so that espionage, suppression of Uberty of thought and 
speech, and arbitrary arrest and imprisonment were common 
features of the despotic government. Education was made 
difficult, and real enlightenment, as by the study of com- 
parative government, modem scientific theories, the latest 
developments in philosophy, rendered almost impossible 
by the rigid exclusion of foreign books on such subjects. 
Hence, in a country where education was the first requisite 
for advancement in official or professional life, the means 
of education were denied to all but a favored few. As a 
climax to these mistakes in domestic policy, Russia drifted 
into a war with Turkey, a war marked by inefficiency and 
peculation among the higher officials and contractors, and 
by almost superhuman bravery among the common soldiers. 
At the end of the war, Russian diplomacy broke down 
utterly : her chief gain, Bessarabia, made an enemy of her 
previously devoted ally, Rumania ; her plans for a greater 
Bulgaria under Russian protection were completely frus- 
trated ; even her intention so to diminish Turkish territory 
in Europe as to render the Turk harmless in the future 
ended in failure. Every element in the domestic, social, 
and political situation, and in foreign relations, stirred the 
malcontents in Russia. 

In a state where police rule was the supreme rule, open 
expression of opinion was, of course, impossible, so that 
the disaffected element had to resort to secret intrigue and 
conspiracy. This element was mainly composed of young 
men and women with more or less education, sincerely 
stirred in the beginning by a patriotic indignation at the 
terrible abuses in their country, and aroused later by 

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unjust police persecution to take active measures against 
the government and its officials. From this element origi- 
nated the group popularly known as Nihilists (from Latin 
Nihil — nothing), so called because of its attitude of dis- 
approval of all Russian institutions. The famous novelist, 
Turgenieflf, defined a' Nihilist as "a man who submits to 
no authority, who accepts not a single principle upon 
faith merely, however high such a principle may stand in 
the eyes of men." Between 1870 and 1880, the Nihilists, 
preaching the political gospel of sociaUsm, adopted the 
policy of educating the peasants. They mingled with the 
ignorant classes and attempted to enlighten them. Although 
they did not counsel revolutionary action, their unsparing 
criticisms of the government, their application of the rule 
of reason to all Russian institutions, and their denuncia- 
tion of such institutions as did not measure up to their 
ideal standards, soon brought them into trouble with the 
authorities. The usual course of procedure followed — 
arbitrary imprisonment, sentence without trial, and exile. 
Hundreds of them fled from Russia. 

The police persecution finally drove a small body among 
the Nihilists, influenced, perhaps, by anarchistic doctrines, 
into a policy of Terrorism. Since they could not apparently 
advance liberal measures by peaceful propaganda, since 
they could not even remain in Russia and have the rights 
of free thought and free speech, these Terrorists determined 
systematically to assassinate those men whom they held 
responsible for their wrongs until the government should 
be intimidated into reform. More remarkable conditions 
have seldom existed in any state. The Terrorists were 
well though secretly organized; they hunted down th^Jr 
prey systematically; and after an assassination they pub- 
lished and spread broadcast their justification of their act. 
In spite of an elaborate system of espionage and thousands 
of imprisonments and exiles, the organization continued, 
its members becoming more and more desperate. Finally, 

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its leaders determined to strike at the fountainhead oi 
Russian misrule by an attempt to assassinate the Czar. 
In April of 1879 a Terrorist schoolmaster fired five shots 
at the sovereign, but missed. In December of the same 
year the train on which the Czar was supposed to be travel- 
ing was blown up, but he had secretly taken a diflFerent train. 
In February of 1880 a mine was exploded in the Winter 
Palace, killing and wounding more than sixty persons, 
but the Czar again escaped. 

These successive attempts, expressing the determina- 
tion of the conspirators, naturally produced a great eflPect 
in St. Petersburg. The Czar called to his aid General 
Boris-MelikofiF, a hero of the Turkish war and an adminis- 
trator of proved ability. Melikoflf was given dictatorial 
powers to suppress the rebellion. Instead of force, however, 
he chose a policy of clemency. By his advice the Czar 
allowed liberty to the zemstvos and to the public press, 
pardoned many political prisoners, and dismissed some of 
the most notorious agents of the government. MelikoflP's 
supreme act, however, was to submit to the Czar proposals 
leading to the formation and promulgation of a constitu- 
tion. After long hesitation, the Czar, on March IS, 1881, 
returned the draft to Melikoflf with his approval and ordered 
it read to the Council of Ministers in a fortnight. 

On that same afternoon, March 13, 1881, the Terrorist 
group laxmched another attempt, this time successful, against 
Alexander's life. As the Czar was riding in 'the streets 
of St. Petersburg, a bomb was thrown at his carriage. 
He escaped, as by a miracle, but a number of his escort 
were killed and wounded; he dismounted to assist the 
wounded, and another bomb exploded near him, tearing 
him to pieces. The tragedy of his assassination at the very 
moment he was planning to give the country its long- 
desired constitution was not, of course, known until after 
his death. 

Alexander HI, son of Alexander 11, succeeded to the 

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throne and reigned until his death in 1894. He was a 
man of thirty-six, of great physical size and strength. He 
was stubborn and strong-willed, subject to violent exhibi- 
tions of anger at persistent opposition. Although his men- 
tal abiUties were not above the average, he was straight- 
forward, courageous, and honest. His education and train- 
ing were those of the ordinary Russian Grand Duke. 

If the Terrorists had expected a change for the better 
with the change in sovereigns, they were disappointed. 
Alexander Ill's entire reign was reactionary. At its 
beginning he sounded the keynote by a proclamation in- 
dicating his own steadfast resolve to maintain the auto- 
cratic power : 

" Dedicating ourselves to our high fimctions, we call upon our 
faithful subjects to serve us and the realm with truth and fidelity ; 
and to strive for the extirpation of the heinous agitation which 
has disgraced the land, the maintenance of religion and morality, 
the extinction of greed and falsehood, and the reestablishment of - 
harmonious working in the institutions given to Russia by her 
great benefactor (Alexander H)." 

The Terrorists were pitilessly hunted down until their or- 
gaoization was finally broken up and the separate indi- 
viduals hanged, imprisoned, exiled, or forced to flee from the 
country. The powers of the zemstvos were again re- 
stricted. The limited freedom allowed the press was with- 
drawn. The persecution of the Jews, countenanced, or at 
least not suppressed, by the government, drove tens of 
thousands out of the country. The secret police were 
augmented in number and power. Freedom of speech was 
unknown. Those who hoped for more liberal government 
were overawed by the ruthlessness and eflSciency of the 
government's police agents and were forced to wait in silence 
for more opportune times. 

Yet the reign of Alexander III, though hard upon the 
liberal element in Russia, was not without progressive 
features. The new monarch showed himself especially 

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interested in the well-being of the peasant class which formed 
so large a part of the population of his empire. In January, 
1884, by a ukase he abolished the hated poll tax, the last 
remaining relic of serfdom; he readjusted for the benefit 
of the peasantry the arrangements in the Edict of Emanci- 
pation providing for payment by the peasants for their 
land; he tempted the peasants for their own good from 
the too thickly populated districts to the thinly i>opulated 
districts by offers of land and governmental assistance; 
he estabUshed a system of Peasants' Banks which advanced 
money at a low rate of interest to the peasantry for the 
purchase of land; and he attempted to improve social 
conditions by lessening the number of dram shops. By 
such measures as these he gained the title of the "Peasants' 
Czar," by which he is still remembered in Russia. 

D. The Near East 

The years immediately following the Congress of Berlin 
were troubled in the Balkan regions by the problem of 
territorial changes dictated by that Congress, especially 
by the difficulties of establishing exact boundary lines 
where the Congress had specified vague directions. A 
commission from the great powers was appointed to carry 
out the provisions of the treaty. 

i. The Execution of the Terms of the Treaty of Berlin 

In the northeast, Rumania and Bulgaria were at logger- 
heads over the boundary between Rumania's new territory, 
the Dobrudja, and Bulgaria. Not until June of 1880 was 
the question settled by giving the fortress of Silistria to 
Bulgaria, but drawing the Rumanian line so close that some 
of the outpost defenses were actually put under Rumanian 

In the northwest, Austro-Hungarian troops acted 
promptly sixteen days after the signing of the treaty of 

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Berlin in sending troops into Bosnia to take possession of 
the administration of that province. They were met by 
immediate resistance on the part of the native Mohamme- 
dans and were forced into a short but severe struggle to 
establish their authority. Not until the end of October, 
1879, was the revolt quelled and eflPective occupation assured. 
The two districts, Bosnia and Herzegovina, were both 
troublesome and rebelUous, however, for two years more. 

In 1882 the Austro-Hungarian government appointed 
Baron von K&Uay the administrator of the occupied terri- 
tory. He had formerly been consul-general at Belgrade, 
Serbia, had written a history of Serbia, and was persona 
grata to the Serbian population. Under his wise and tactful 
administration, great constructive work was undertaken 
and the districts gradually became more reconciled to the 
Austro-Hungarian government. 

In the west, Montenegro, to which had been assigned 
by the Treaty of Berlin the two Albanian districts of Gusinje 
and Plava, found extreme difficulty in taking over her new 
possessions. The Mohammedan Albanians, naturally great 
fighters, having little regard for the decisions of the Con- 
gress of Berlin, objected to being transferred without their 
consent from one government to another. They foresaw 
that their lawlessness, which was with them a time-honored 
privilege under the loose and inefficient Turkish regime, 
might be eflPectually curbed by the Montenegrin govern- 
ment. The Sultan, though he openly dispatched envoys 
to the Albanians to persuade them to yield, was not ill- 
pleased by their resistance. So fierce was the fighting 
during 1879, and so obvious the impossibility of little 
Monten^ro establishing her control, that the powers 
intervened and suggested a modification of the provisions 
of the treaty. By this change, Montenegro was given the 
seaport of Dulcigno and a strip of seaboard as far as the 
mouth of the river Bojana. By a display of force and by 
threats the powers induced Turkey to agree to these terms, 

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and Montenegro was established in her new possessions 
at the end of 1880. 

In the south the * readjustment of the new boundaries 
between Greece and Turkey as provided by the Treaty 
of Beriin took three years. The Turkish government 
pursued its customary dilatory policy, feeUng certain that 
the jealousies of the great powers would prevent their in- 
tervention on behalf of Greece. Successive Greco-Turkish 
commissions failed to agree. In 1880 Greece, obtaining 
no assistance from the powers, began to mobilize her troops 
to gain the desired territory by war. The threat of war 
brought speedy intervention, and, May 24, 1881, a conven- 
tion was at last signed giving Greece the large part of 
Thessaly and a portion of Epirus, a gain altogether of 
some 8750 square miles. 

ii. Bulgaria 

In allowing the modifications of the Montenegrin terri- 
tories and the readjustment of the Greco-Turkish boundaries, 
the great powers had given convincing testimony that they 
were not prepared to support by force the terms of the 
Treaty of BerUn. This fact undoubtedly had some eflFect 
in inducing the Bulgarians and Eastern RumeUans to re- 
arrange according to their own desires the provisions of 
that treaty in so far as it affected them. 

It will be remembered that the Treaty of Berlin bisected 
the Bulgarian territory as arranged by Russia (Treaty of 
San Stefano) into two parts, Bulgaria and Eastern Rumelia, 
of which Bulgaria was constituted an autonomous prin- 
cipality and Eastern Rumelia was thrust back imder the 
sovereignty of Turkey. This arrangement was intensely 
unpopular. The people of Eastern Rumelia, Bulgarians 
by blood, speech, and religion, desired political amsdgama- 
tion with Bulgaria. During the years following the Treaty, 
they were restive and dissatisfied under Turkish rule. 

In the meanwhile, the new Bulgarian state had organized 

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under Russian auspices, adopted its constitution, and chosen 
(April 29, 1879) as its jfirst ruler Prince Alexander of Batten- 
burg, a nephew of the Czar. The Bulgarian people and 
their new riiler both felt, naturally, under the strongest 
obligations at the beginning to Russia, by whom their 
national existence had been secured. Within a few years, 
however, they began to resent the Russian attitude toward 
their country. The Russian commissioners, who were 
placed in high and controlling positions in the government, 
treated Bulgaria as if it were a Russian province. Prince 
Alexander finally, in 1883, adopted an attitude of independ- 
ence, restored the constitution which had been suspended 
at Russian instigation in 1881, and showed a disposition 
to govern Bulgaria for Bulgaria's sake and not for Russia's. 
The Russian emissaries withdrew at once from Bulgaria, 
and the authorities began to intrigue against the too in- 
dependent prince. 

In Eastern Rumelia the Turkish government appointed 
a governor-general acceptable to the people, gave the dis- 
trict a conservative constitution, and made no eflFort to 
molest or persecute the inhabitants. The Bulgar popula- 
tion continued, however, in spite of their peace and pros- 
perity under these privileges, to desire union with Bulgaria. 
In 1885 the leaders determined to take matters into their 
own hands. They arrested the governor-general without 
difficulty, and issued a proclamation declaring the union 
of the two Bulgarias under Prince Alexander. Alexander 
hesitated to defy Turkey and the powers by accepting 
the revolution, but was warned by Stambuloff, then Speaker 
of the Bulgarian Chamber (Sobranje), that he could not 
disregard the will of his people : 

" Sire, the union is made — the revolt is an accomplished fact 
past recall, and the time for hesitation has gone. Two roads lie 
before Your Highness — the one to Philippopolis and as much 
farther as God may lead ; the other to the Danube and Darmstadt. 
I advise you to take the crown the Bulgarian nation offers you." 

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Alexander yielded, marched his army to Philippopolis 
(September 21, 1885), and received the full support of the 
Sobranje in his course. 

This breach of the Treaty of Berlin aroused great excite- 
ment, not only in the Balkans but among the diplomats 
of the great powers. To be sure, it was the accomplish- 
ment of what Russia had herself provided in the Treaty of 
San Stefano, but since then Russia's attitude had changed. 
The Russian agents had failed to retain their control ova*, 
and their influence in, Bulgaria, so that the Czar's govern- 
ment no longer desired an increase of Bulgarian territory- 
Alexander III of Russia, therefore, professed great indigna- 
tion at his nephew's act in accepting* the throne of imited 
Bulgaria, and sympathized with the protests of Turkey. 
The Bulgarian independence of Russian influence had 
gained the friendship of Great Britain, however,^ so that 
British diplomats insisted that the will of the people of the 
country should be respected. Since Turkey was unable 
because of internal complications to do more than protest, 
and since Great Britain's influence offset Russian op[K>si- 
tion, the coup seemed likely to succeed without hostiUties. 

Among the Balkan states, however, the formation of 
united Bulgaria had seriously disarranged the balance of 
power. The new state was overwhelmingly larger and 
stronger than its neighbors. Greece and Serbia felt that 
their vital interests were affected, and demanded territorial 
compensation. After waiting a short time in vain for in- 
tervention in their behalf, they began to arm. On Novem- 
ber 16, Serbia began hostilities by marching across the 
Bulgarian frontier with a force of about 14,000 men. 
November 19, the Serbs met the Bulgarians in equal force 
near the village of Slivnitza. Alexander of Bulgaria set 
a wonderful example to his troops and after a three-day 
battle gained a decisive victory, driving the Serbs in disorder 
back across the boundary. He started to invade Serbian 
territory but was checked by the Austro-Hungarian govem- 

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ment. November 28, an armistice was signed ; and March 
S, 1886, the Treaty of Bucharest definitely ended the war. 

Greece continued to mobilize for war and a number of 
skirmishes took place on the frontier. Great Britain in- 
tervened at this time, not in favor of Greece as was hoped, 
but in favor of peace. The demand was made that Grecian 
troops be restored to a peace footing. When the Greek 
government continued hostilities, the British navy estab- 
lished a blockade of Greek ports. This coercion was suc- 
cessful. Greece was forced to disarm and to accept the 
new Bulgarian state. By the middle of June, 1886, the 
crisis was over. 

Alexander of Bulgaria did not long enjoy the fruits of 
his victory. His defiance of Russia excited continual 
Russian intrigues against him. Now that Bulgaria was 
enlarged, it was the more desirable to establish Russian in- 
fluence therein. Unable to accomplish their ends peaceably 
and openly, Russian agents resorted to force. At two o'clock 
on the morning of August 21, 1886, the Russian conspirators 
broke into the palace, roused Alexander from his bed, 
and at the point of revolvers forced him to sign a formal 
paper abdicating the throne. They then kidnaped him 
and landed him the following day in Russian territory. 
Before Europe at large knew what had happened, the coup 
was complete. 

Stambuloff, speaker of the Sobranje, promptly organized 
a revolt in Alexander's favor, succeeded in rallying the 
nation to his side, and invited the former ruler to return. 
Alexander's spirit was broken, however. He saw no chance 
to rule successfully so long as he had the opposition of 
Russia. September 7, 1886, he publicly abdicated and 
retired to the less exciting life of an oflBcer in the Austro- 
Hungarian army. 

Stambuloff by his energy and determination saved his 
country at this period. He was the chief prop of the regency 
appointed by Alexander at the time of his abdication and 

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was instrumental in frustrating the Russian attempts to 
gain control of the government. It was necessary, however, 
to choose a new ruler at the earliest possible moment. This 
task proved difficult, for the opposition of Russia was cer- 
tain to make government difficult and dangerous. For 
six months the Bulgarian crown went begging among the 
scions of noble houses in Europe, one after another refusing 
the perilous honor. Finally Prince Ferdinand of Saxe- 
Coburg accepted the throne and was duly elected Prince of 
Bulgaria by the Sobranje, July 7, 1887. With the aid of 
his great minister, Stambuloff, often referred to as the 
Bulgarian Bismarck, he defied Russian hostihty. As the 
years passed, he gained the reputation of being wise as a 
ruler, astute as a diplomat, and sincerely devoted to the 
good of his adopted country. 

iii. The EflFect of the Balkan Changes upon the Inter- 
national Situation 

These changes we have mentioned above bore upon the 
larger European situation insofar as they affected the 
ambitions of Russia and Austria-Hungary respectively in 
the Near East. At the close of the Russo-Turkish war, 
Russian influence was naturally the greatest in the Balkans. 
Russia had decisively defeated the unspeakable Turk, had 
won independence for Bulgaria, and had taken a long 
step forward toward the coveted Constantinople. Even 
the check administered to Russia in the Congress of Berlin 
did not weaken her prestige in southeastern Europe. The 
small states, mostly Slav in blood, religion, and traditions, 
still looked to the Czar as the greatest protecting power 
against possible Turkish encroachments. 

This favored position Russia lost in great measure dur- 
ing the decade from 1880 to 1890. Austria-Hungary, by 
gaining the administration (and by tacit consent the final 
reversion) of Bosnia and Herzegovina, established herself 
at the gateway of the Balkans. The Austro-Hungarian 

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government won the gratitude of Serbia in 1886 by checking 
the Bulgarian invasion after the battle of Slivnitza. German 
princely houses supplied monarchs to Rumania and Bulgaria, 
and a queen for Greece. And when Bulgaria turned against 
Russia because of Russian intrigues for power, it was but 
natural that it should incline toward the powers of the 
Triple Alliance. 

Furthermore, Germany, having allied herself with Austria- 
Hungary, showed a disposition to associate herself with 
that country in her Balkan aspirations, and even to expand 
these aspirations beyond the Balkans into Turkey. As 
the immense possibihties which lay in the Turkish posses- 
sions in Asia Minor were realized, the German enthusi- 
asm increased. An energetic development of this country 
would bring untold prosperity to a great state. Bismarck 
began to feel the Drang nach Osten as well as Austria- 
Hungary. His action supporting Austria-Hungary in the 
(Congress of Berlin, and thus assuming the credit, to some 
extent at least, of saving Turkey from the rapacity of Russia, 
gave him an entering wedge for the cultivation of good 
relations with the Porte. Even though Great Britain had 
long been the protector of Turkey, her influence might be 
supplanted there by adroit diplomacy. The initial step 
was taken by lending to the Turkish government German 
officers for the much-needed reorganization of the army. 
From 1883 to 1895 one of the most promising of the 
younger officers of the German army, Colmar von der 
Goltz, labored successfully with this problem. The results 
were shown in the overwhelming victory achieved by Turkey 
in the short Greco-Turkish war of 1897. A second step 
was taken by diverting German capital into railroad, mining, 
and development concessions in Asia Minor. Thus the 
first link of what became known as the Bagdad railroad, 
the link from Contantinople to Angora, was built in 1888, 
and work begun on the branch from Eski-Shehir to Konia. 
From this period on, Germany was as keenly and vitally 

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interested in the pressure toward the east as was her Austro- 
Hungarian ally. 

The influence which the Germanic powers gained in the 
Balkans and Turkey in this period after the Congress of 
Berhn has never since been shaken off. When Austria- 
Hungary accepted Italy as an ally in the Triple Alliance 
(1882), she practically acknowledged the impossibility of 
ever recovering her lost Itahan provinces. The growth of 
her influence in the regions to the southeast, however, 
gave her diplomats the hope that what they had lost in 
Italy, they might eventually regain from the Balkans. 
And Germany, becoming more and more inspired by the 
potential wealth of Asia Minor, invested heavily in con- 
cessions in this region, and came to look upon it as def- 
initely within her sphere of influence. The stone which 
Bismarck had once rejected as not worth the bones of a 
single grenadier verily became the cornerstone of German 

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A. Italy 

Italy lost her first King, Victor Emmanuel, January 9, 
1878. He was idolized by the people, for whose emancipation 
from the hand of Austria he had striven so long and so 
successfully. His courage, sincerity, frankness, and honesty, 
coupled with good common sense, earned him the spon- 
taneous title of U re galantoumo, which is inadequately 
translated by the words *The Eang who was an honest man/ 
Over his tomb was placed the simple inscription : "To the 
Father of his Country." His son Umberto (Humbert), 
a man of thirty-four, succeeded to the throne as Umberto I, 
took the oath to the constitution, January 29, and was 
loyally accepted by the people. 

A month later the Pope, Pius IX, died and was succeeded 
by Leo XIH, then sixty-eight years of age. The momentary 
hope that the inauguration of a new Eang of Italy and a 
new Pope at practically the same time might favor a more 
satisfactory adjustment of the relations between the Italian 
government and the papacy was soon dispelled. The gov- 
ernment made no overtures to the pontifical court, and the 
new Pope quickly proved that he intended to follow the 
precedent of the deceased Pius IX. He refused to recog- 
nize the Kingdom of Italy ; he refused to leave the confines 
of the Vatican ; he continued to picture himself as the pris- 
oner of the "Robber King." 

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i. Internal Developments 

The decade 1880-1890 was not a successful one in Italian 
politics, finance, or economics. In the parliament few great 
constructive measures were carried through successfully; 
in the exchequer, the small surpluses of the first few years 
gave way to increasing deficits ; in the industrial life of the 
peninsula, the mass of the people remained poor, miser- 
able, and discontented. No statesman rose to prominence 
with a power and a vision equal to the problems of the 

One of the fundamental causes of the failure of the gov- 
ernment to achieve better results lay in the actual operation 
of the parliamentary system under Italian conditions. The 
members of the chamber were not divided, as in Great Brit- 
ain where the "parliamentary system had worked well, into 
two equal parties, but into a number of small groups of 
various shades of political opinion. No one group could 
command a majority of the votes. Each ministry, therefore, 
was a coalition ministry, dependent in its parliamentary 
action upon the united support of a number of the political 
groups ; and each legislative measure had to be a compromise 
bill, so designed that it would not ahenate any of the gov- 
ernment's supporters. The ministry's position was never 
secure. It could not afford to refuse any concessions de- 
manded by the deputies or groups of deputies on which its 
life depended. Its weakness too often resulted in indecision 
and vacillation. Its members were forced to "play politics" 
to secure their own position. Great constructive legbla- 
tion gave way before petty personal rivalries for political 

A grave consequence of these conditions was reflected in 
the financial conditions of the country. Italy had begim 
her independent existence under a staggering burden of 
debt: she was unable to lessen this burden as the years 
passed. The construction and development of railways. 

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the building of roads, and the enlargement and improve- 
ment of harbor facilities were urgently needed to assist 
industrial progress. When these were undertaken, the 
government contracts were used as political bribes to satisfy, 
the demands of the government's supporters. The contracts 
were let at abnormally high prices. One railway line, 
estimated cost $200,000,000, was actually contracted for 
at $400,000,000. The deficit of the country was $5,000,000 
in the fiscal year 1885-1886; $14,000,000 in 1887-1888; 
and $47,000,000 in 1888-1889. A great part of the amount 
of these deficits was due to the excessive cost of government 

Industrial and social conditions failed to improve. Taxes 
were heavy, the cost of food high, illiteracy common. The 
government had provided in 1881 for the gradual removal 
of the hated "Grist Tax" on cereals, but had substituted 
therefor heavy grain duties, and excessive duties on sugar 
and petroleum. The government had passed in 1877 a 
universal education law, but, since its execution had been left 
to the communes, it had not been eflFectively established. 
With natural inclination to blame the existing government, 
the people became dis&atisfied with the monarchy and 
swelled the number of the Republican and Radical parties. 
Serious riots broke out in 1889 in Rome, Milan, Turin, 
and in the southern district of Apulia, but were suppressed 
by force. 

At this period when unrest was rife throughout Italy, 
the government passed (1882) an electoral reform bill which 
had been under discussion in parliament for several years. 
By this bill, the property qualification for the suffrage 
was lowered from 40 lire (c. $8.00) to 19 lire 80 centesimi 
(c. $3.95) ; and provision made that all men over 21 who 
had received a primary school education should have the 
suffrage. The effect of this bill was to increase the elec- 
torate from 625,000 to 2,000,000. As disaffection spread 
in the country at large, the greater part of the increased 

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electorate went to swell the ranks of the Republican and 
Radical parties^ thus increasmg the difficulties of the govern- 
ment in maintaining a loyal majority in the chamb^. 


ii. Foreign Policies 

While the government was thus beset with serious domes- 
tic problems, it persisted in committing itself to a foreign 
policy befitting one of the great powers. Italian statesmen 
favored colonial expansion, a large and costly army and 
navy, and entrance into foreign alliances at a time when 
the country was incurring annual deficits of millions of dol- 
lars and was quelling hunger riots by force. 

The diplomats of Italy at the Congress of Berlin felt 
that Italy was isolated in Europe. The danger of such 
isolation lay in the relations between the Papacy and the 
Italian government. If some foreign power, as Prance, 
should uphold the claim of the Papacy to the possession of 
Rome, Italian statesmen realized that Italy, fighting alone, 
would be condemned to defeat. They therefore favored 
entrance into a Triple Alliance with Germany and Austria- 
Hungary for Italian security. The difficulties of such 
diplomacy, however, were very great. Austria-Hungary 
had, before 1866, been the traditional enemy of Italy : it 
would be hard to reconcile public opinion to a close alliance 
with the Austrians. Furthermore, should news of the 
Itahan diplomacy leak out before the alliance was consum- 
mated, it might bring on the attack by the French which 
the Italians so feared. And lastly, Germany and Austria- 
Hungary had given little outward evidence that they de- 
sired Italy in the alliance. Indeed, certain popular demon- 
strations in Italy in favor of acquiring the remaining Italian 
territories under Austrian dominion {Italia Irredentay con- 
sisting of the Trentino and the port of Trieste), had aroused 
in 1880 and 1881 serious resentment on the part of the Aus- 
tro-Hungarian government. 

While the pros and cons of the benefits of this alliance 

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were under discussion by Italian statesmen, France took a 
step which had great influence in their decision. Tunis, 
in northern Africa, had long been regarded as the natural 
and desirable ground for Italian .colonial enterprise : it was 
fertile; it was weakly guarded by Turkey; and it was the 
nearest African territory to Italy. They had no knowledge 
at the time that at the Congress of Berlin Bismarck had 
already encomraged France to take the country when con- 
venient, and had actually been instrumental in arranging 
for the consent of England. The sensational awakening 
of the ItaUans came suddenly in the spring of 1881. France 
sent in an expeditionary force against the will of the Bey of 
Tunis to punish some ma:rauders. The force acted with 
great speed : April 26, it occupied the island of Tabarca ; 
May 2, it seized the important town of Biserta ; and May 
12 it extracted from the Bey the Treaty of Bardo ac- 
knowledging a French protectorate. The entire coup was 
begun and carried through before the Italians were aware 
of its significance. 

Italian indignation was intense. Added to the chagrin 
and disappointment at being deceived was the fear that 
Italian interests at Timis were endangered and that Italian 
shores were laid open to attack from a new quarter. The 
government, however, was in no condition to take hostile 
military action ; but they welcomed more eagerly the idea 
of an alliance with the central powers. 

At this time conditions favored the Italian wishes. The 
growing rivalry between Russia and Austria-Hungary in 
the Balkans made it essential that Austria-Hungary should 
be insured against attack in the rear in case she had to fight 
Russia. Bismarck, seeing the Austro-Hungarian danger 
and realizing that the security of Austria-Hungary strength- 
ened Germany's power (inasmuch as Austria-Hungary 
was Germany's ally), encouraged the Austrian diplomats 
to take advantage of Italian resentment against France 
to bring Italy into the alliance. 

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With both parties willing, the details of the alliance were 
quickly arranged. "King Humbert and Queen Margherita 
of Italy paid an official visit to Francis Joseph in Vienna, 
staying at the Hofburg frona the 27th to the Slst of October, 
1881. The Austrian emperor and the Austrian people ex- 
tended to their Italian guests the most cordial reception. 
The negotiations were completed and the results embodied 
in a treaty, the Treaty of the Triple Alliance, May 20, 1882. 
For nearly a year afterwards, the existence of the treaty 
was kept secret. When its existence was finally revealed, 
the most influential of the Italian political groups were en- 
thusiastic in its favor. Italy had secured herself against 
the loss of Rome, and looked forward to gaining some 
compensation in the distant future for Tunis. 

Entrance into the Triple Alliance entailed an increase in 
Italy's military and naval program, however, which the 
Italian treasury was little able to bear. We know how 
Bismarck laid all emphasis upon force in international 
politics : we can be reasonably certain that in the Treaty 
of the Triple Alliance specifications were made as to the 
strength which Italy should be prepared to add to that of 
her allies. It has been reported that Italy engaged to act 
with two armies on her northwestern border against the 
French armSe des Alpes (war strength, 250,000), and to 
provide a third army to go into Germany and fight against 
either France or Russia as might be expedient. At any 
rate, on May 11, 1882, a week before the treaty was signed, 
the Italian parliament passed a new Army Bill, including 
a special credit of 120,000,000 hre for the creation of 
two new army corps to bring the regular army to a strength 
of 850,000 eflFectives. And thereafter, even with her 
impoverished treasury, Italy's budget contained annual 
estimates of between $40,000,000 and $50,000,000 for 

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B. Austria-Hungary 

i. The Dual Empire 

In 1880 the Dual Empire had lived for thirteen years 
under the provisions of the so-called Au^gleich, or Com- 
promise, of 1867. The Emperor-King — Emperor of Aus- 
tria and Ejng in Hungary — received the hearty allegiance 
of both parts of his country. One of the most serious dan- 
gers he had formerly to face, the danger of a Hungarian 
revolution, was permanently removed. 

One feature of the constitution of the Dual Empire gave 
trouble. It was provided in the Ausgleich that the mutual 
economic and financial relations between the component 
states of the Dual Monarchy should be revised at ten-year 
intervals. The initial agreement was made in 1867: re- 
visions were due, therefore, in 1877 and in 1887. Each 
recurring period of revision caused a long dispute, often 
resulting in a serious political crisis. The questions to be 
settled — the quota of the national revenue which each 
should provide, the rate of duty upon certain imports (as 
coflfee, sugar, and petroleum), the management of the central 
financial institution — were all ones over which national 
interests and jealousies might easily be aroused. The 
settlement had to be agreed upon first by the ministers of 
Austria and of Hungary; then it had to be submitted to 
the respective parliaments in the two countries, where it 
was discussed by special committees; finally it had to be 
debated and passed in each of the parliaments as a whole. 
The first revision, that in 1877, took two years from the 
time discussion began in the spring of 1876 to the final 
passage of the bill in June of 1878. The second revision, 
that in 1887, took a little less time, because Count Taafe. 
the Austrian premier, was able to command a solid majority 
in his parliament. 

The foreign policy of the Dual Empire was profoundly 
affected by the conclusion of the Dual Alliance with Germany 

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in 1879 and the Triple Alliance with Germany and Italy 
in 1882. The support of Germany gave Austro-Hungarian 
diplomats an assurance of safety in their endeavors to ad- 
vance their interests in the Balkan regions, and the adhesion 
of Italy to the alliance in 1882 removed the danger of an 
attack from the rear in case of trouble with Russia. Aus- 
tria-Hungary definitely abandoned her expectations of re- 
trieving the position she had lost in the Italian peninsula, 
and set herself to acquiring a dominating influence, that might 
lead later to territorial expansion, in the western Balkans. 

ii. Austria 

In Austria Francis Joseph had as his chief minister from 
1879 to 1893 Count Taafe. Count Taafe had in his boyhood 
been chosen to be one of the playmates of the young Francis 
Joseph, so that a close personal friendship existed between 
the minister and his sovereign. Beneath a cynical manner 
and pleasure-loving habits, Count Taafe had an unswerving 
loyalty to his Emperor, a patriotic love of his country, and 
an exceptional ability in handling men. 

In politics, Taafe adopted every practical method to in- 
crease the power and prestige of the Emperor. The German 
element in the state had, during the years immediately 
preceding Taafe's appointment, persistently blocked the 
Emperor's measures, because it feared these might increase 
Slav power in the state. Taafe turned directly to the Slav 
elements, the Czechs (in Bohemia) and the Poles (in Galicia), 
for political support. To each of these elements he granted 
substantial concessions. The Czechs secured control in 
the Bohemian Diet and in the Bohemian delegation to the 
Reichsrath; they were given their own university by a 
division of the University of Prague into two universities, one 
German and the other Czechish ; and the Czechish language 
was established on a status in Bohemia equal to the Grerman. 
The Poles were allowed to obtain control of the Diet in 
Galicia and were given a liberal hand in administration of 

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the province. Naturally, Taafe's policies were distasteful 
to the strong German element which desired to maintain 
its ascendancy in the state. The policies succeeded, how- 
ever, in holding together the diverse nationalities in the state 
throughout an exceedingly critical period in Austrian history. 

iii. Hungary 

In Hungary Count K^lman Tisza, leader of the Liberal 
Party, was head of the government from 1876 to 1890. 
De4k, who had done so much for Hungarian independence, 
died January 29, 1876. His mantle descended to Tisza. 
Count Tisza was an exceedingly forceful man, who devoted 
his entire energies to the unification of his country and to 
its material prosperity. He was practically dictator in 
Hungary during his long ministry, so all the political de- 
velopment during this period can be ascribed to him. 

Hungary was confronted with a difficult and complicated 
problem resulting from the confusion of peoples and lan- 
guages within the Kingdom. The Magyars, the politically 
dominant race, composed approximately one-half the popu- 
lation : Germans, Slovaks, Rumanians, Ruthenians, Croa- 
tians, and Serbians made up the other half. Tisza aimed 
to convert the Kingdom into a unified and homogeneous 
Magyar state. He endeavored to force the Magyarization 
of the subject races. To accomplish his purpose, he estab- 
lished Magyar as the only official language, and required 
Magyar to be the tongue used and taught in the schools. 
The subject races, each clinging to its own language, customs, 
and traditions, felt that they were being persecuted by 
being compelled to use and study Magyar. Tisza sternly 
repressed all outbreaks against his policy of Magyarization, 
and proceeded in the belief that within a few generations 
the country would be successfully unified. 

With this policy of Magyarization, Tisza combined an 
eflPort to further the economic development of his country. 
When he first accepted the premiership, Hungary was in a 

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poor financial condition, unable to raise loans except at an 
extortionate rate of interest; it was without a railroad 
system adapted to the commercial and industrial needs of 
the people ; it lacked any considerable oversea trade. When 
he left the cabinet, Hungary*s finances were in excellent 
condition; it had a large and scientifically developed 
railway system; the foreign commerce naturally con- 
tinued to go in large measure to Austria and to adjacent 
countries, but Fiume, its only seaport of consequence, 
had become the clearing point for a gradually increasing 
export business. 

Count Tisza raised a host of enemies during his ministry 
by his arbitrary system. It is undoubtedly true that he 
maintained his parliamentary support by questionable 
methods in the elections, and that, for the sake of pursuing 
his policy of Magyarization, he abused the liberal principles 
he was supposed to represent. He was aiming toward a 
great end, however, and his measure of success in the material 
progress of Hungary, and in the increased prestige which 
Hungary gained in the affairs of the Dual Empire, is used as 
argument by his adherents to justify his statesmanship. 
The opposition to him reached a climax in the years 1889 
and 1890, when open threats of revolution were made on 
the floor of the Hungarian parliament. In the spring of 
the latter year (March 13) he placed his resignation in the 
hands of his King. 

C, Germany 

In Germany, Bismarck maintained his ascendancy in 
domestic and foreign policies. He was now, 1880, a man of 
sixty-five and had for eighteen years (1862-1880) been 
the foremost statesman in Germany. His character and 
attainments were recognized and appreciated by the German 
people, however much they might disagree at times with 
his policies. On the occasion of his seventieth birthday, 
in 1885, the nation joined in a remarkable demonstration 

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of esteem, raising by popular subscription more than two 
million marks for him. He retained the affection and con- 
fidence of his Emperor. The famous "Never" of William I 
in answer to Bismarck's request in 1877 to be allowed to 
resign indicated the reliance his aged master placed upon 
him. Contemporary statesmen in other European countries 
honored and feared him. The true magnitude of his achieve- 
ments in international statecraft had at last been under- 
stood by them. 

i. Bismarck's Domestic Policies 

To Bismarck, this decade of peace was welcome for the 
opportimity to concentrate attention upon pressing domestic 
problems. The Kulturkampf, which had so disturbed 
Germany in the first years after its imity had been achieved, 
was abandoned by Bismarck before a greater menace in 
the growth of radicalism, and especially of Socialism. In 
Germany, the growth of the empire and the concessions 
which had during the critical years been made to the people, 
had immensely stimulated the radical forces. At the time 
when he had needed the enthusiastic support of the whole 
people, the chancellor had recognized the folly of inciting 
ci^al discord by attempting to suppress the radicals. One 
offspring of the radical movement. Socialism, gained an 
enormous number of adherents. It mustered half a million 
voters in the elections of 1870, and later won a dozen seats 
in the Reichstag. The aged Emperor, more conservative 
at eighty than when he first ascended the throne, stanchly 
opposed radicalism, and especially the theories and policies 
of the Socialists. It fell to Bismarck's part to strengthen 
again the forces of authority in the state as opposed to the 
wishes of a considerable mass of the people. 

His first attempts to check radicalism were by suppression. 
Two attempts upon the aged Emperor's life in 1878 gave 
him the excuse for introducing and passing in the Reichstag 
in October of that year a drastic bill aimed against the Social 

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Democratic party. A recital of a few of the provisions of 
that bill, the Socialists' Act (Socialistengesetz)^ will indicate 
its severity. 

^'Associations which aim, by social-democratic, socialistic, or 
communistic agitation, at the destruction of the existing order in 
State or society are forbidden. 

'* Meetings in which social-democratic, socialistic, or communistic 
tendencies, directed to the destruction of the existing order in 
State or society, make their appearance are to be dissolved. 

" All printed matter, in which appear social-democratic, socialis- 
tic, or communistic tendencies, directed to the destruction of the 
existing order of State or society in a manner dangerous to the 
peace and, in particular, to the harmony between different classes 
of the population, is to be forbidden. 

*'The collection of contributions for the furthering of social- 
democratic, socialistic, or communistic endeavors, directed toward 
the destruction of the existing order of the State or society, as 
also the public instigation to the furnishing of such contributions, 
are to be forbidden," 

Although the Socialists themselves, aiming to overthrow 
the government and professing to be hostile to all existing 
institutions, could have no legitimate complaint against the 
efforts of the government to crush them, the bill itself was 
a mistake. It gave the Socialists at once the character of 
martyrs beneath a system as choking and autocratic as that 
maintained by Metternich. Although the execution of 
the bill, resulting in hundreds of prosecutions and punish- 
ments, thoroughly demoralized the outward organization 
of the Social-democratic party and forced the Socialists to 
work secretly, it aroused the keenest resentment among 
great masses of the people and actually converted many to 
the oppressed party. 

Bismarck's attempt to suppress the Social-democratic 
movement among the radicals in Germany was supported 
a few years later by a series of great constructive measures 
of world-wide significance. His theory was that the forces 
of Socialism were recruited from the dissatisfied and mis- 

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erable classes of the people, and that these forces would be 
permanently weakened by a program of social legislation 
for the betterment of these classes. Hence, in the message 
from the Throne, November 17, 1881, was announced a 
series of measures to promote the well-being of the workers 
of the Empire, these measures consisting of: (1) accident 
insurance; (2) sickness insurance; and (3) old-age or in- 
capacity insurance. In the face of terrific opposition in 
parliament, Bismarck imdertook to carry through these 
measures. In 188S was passed the sickness insurance bill ; 
in 1884 the accident insurance, and in 1889, by a small 
majority, the old-age and incapacity insurance. The 
general principle of these measures was the requirement 
that every workingman should be insured, and thus be 
comfortably taken care of in such individual crises as would 
otherwise result in poverty and misery. In the original 
bills Bismarck had placed the entire burden of insurance 
upon the state, but the parliament modified the bills so 
that (1) in accident insurance the employers should pay 
the entire premium, (2) in sickness insurance the employers 
should pay one-third and the employees the two-thirds of 
the premium, and (3) in old age or incapacity insurance, 
employer, employee, and state should share in the premium 

These three consecutive measures of social legislation 
form one of the greatest achievements of Bismarck's career. 
They constitute his attempt to allay social unrest and un- 
happiness. He was a pioneer in this work. His primary 
motive, as has been indicated, was to create within the state 
a contented body of people who would be inclined to support 
the government and not to promote radicalism and socialism 
in politics. In defending his program, which was popularly 
known as State Socialism, before the Reichstag, he once said : 

" Give the workingman the right to employment as long as he 
has strength, assure him care when he is sick, and maintenance 
when he is old. If you will do that without fearing the sacrifice, 

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or crying out * State Socialism' as soon as the words 'provision 
for old age' are uttered . . . then I beUeve these gentlemen (i.e 
the Socialists) will sound their bird call in vain ; and as soon as 
the workingmen see that the government is deeply interested in 
their welfare, the flocking to them will cease." 

Although these measures did not check the growth of the 
Socialist party in Germany, they had a pronounced eflFect 
upon the attitude of the people toward the government. 
The younger generation, especially, seeing the interference 
of the government in so many details of the economic life 
for the benefit of the living and working conditions of the 
laboring classes, learned to regard their government as a 
kindly guardian of their interests. Bismarck strengthened 
the influences that made for paternal government. His 
ideas in state insurance have been since this i>eriod widely 
studied and, in more or less modified form, followed in other 

In economic legislation as well as in social legislation, 
Bismarck introduced notable measures during this decade. 
In 1879 he definitely abandoned the policy of free trade 
for that of the protective tariff. He had two reasons for 
changing his policy. In the first place the Imperial budget 
had, almost from the beginning in 1871, shown an annual 
deficit, which had to be met by contributions from the 
separate states of the Empire. Bismarck strongly wished 
to have the Imperial Treasury in a position to help the 
states of the Empire rather than to be a solicitor of funds 
from the states. In this connection, too, he was looking 
forward to his state insurance schemes which would call 
for large expenditures from the imperial funds. In a pro- 
tective tariff he saw the opportunity to fill the Imperial 
Treasury. In the second place he was honestly convinced 
that Germany was suffering in her economic conditions from 
the free trade policy. The iron and steel industry was 
demoralized by the importation, free of duty, of the products 
of the English mines and manufactures; the agricultural 

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districts were unable to compete with the grain imported, 
free of duty, from Russia. In introducing his protective 
policy to the Reichstag in a speech May 2, 1879, he said : 

" We have hitherto^ owing to our policy of the open door, been 
the dumping ground for the over-production of other coimtries. 
It is this, in my opinion, that has depressed prices in Germany, 
that has prevented the growth of our industries, the development 
of our economic life. Let us but close the door, let us raise the 
somewhat higher barrier which I am now proposing, and see to 
it that at least we preserve for German industry the same market 
that we are now good-naturedly allowing foreigners to exploit. . . . 
The fact is that our condition is unsatisfactory and, in my opinion, 
is worse than that of any of our protectionist neighbors. If the 
dangers of protection are as great as they are painted by enthusi- 
astic free-traders, France would have been a ruined and im- 
poverished country long ago, because of the theories which she 
has followed ever since the time of Colbert. . . . For the abstract 
teaching of science in this connection I care not a straw. I base 
my opinion on experience, the experience of our time. I see that 
protectionist countries are prospering, that free-trade countries 
are retrograding, and that great and powerful England, the mighty 
athlete, who, having hardened her sinews, stepped out into the 
open market and said: *Who will fight me? I am ready for 
any and all,* even she is gradually returning toward protection, 
and will in a few years adopt it, in order to keep for herself at 
least the English market." 

After a long and bitter political struggle Bismarck won 
the day for his measures. Germany has ever since remained 
a protectionist state. The chancellor and his successors 
have pursued the undeviating policy of encouraging by 
every means possible the economic and agricultural interests 
of the Empire. The remarkable stimulation of home in- 
dustry which began immediately after the protective tariff 
took effect, seems to have justified, to the German people 
at least, his initial arguments. A few statistics will show 
how immediate the effect of the tariff was upon German 
economic conditions. Naturally, the first result would be 
a falling off in imports : 

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IKPOBTB 1877. 1878, 1879 lurotm 1880. 1881, 1882 

1877 — 3,872,400,000 marks 1880 — 2,844,268,000 marks 

1878 — 8,716,600,000 marks 1881 — 2,990,248,000 marks 

1879 — 3,888,100,000 marks 1882 — 3,134,656,000 marks 

The stimulation to one of the chief industries affected by 
the tariff is seen in the rapid increase in the production of 
pig iron : 

Bbfobb tb> Tabifv AviBB ram Tabot 

1877 — 1,899,000 tons 1880 — 2,692,000 tons 

1878 — 2,119,000 tons 1881 — 2,879,000 tons 

1879 — 2,201,000 tons 1882 — 3,344,000 tons 

Likewise this stimulation may be seen in the production 
of coal : 

BwoBB TBa Tabiff ArsiB «■■ Tabo* 

1877 — 37,530,000 tons 1880 — 46,974,000 tons 

1878 — 39,590,000 tons 1881 — 48,688,000 tons 

1879 — 42,026,000 tons 1882 — 52,119,000 tons 

In a further attempt to centralize power in the empire and 
to increase the revenue of the monarchy, Bismarck advo- 
cated the imperial ownership of all the raikoad lines, as 
well as of the postal and telegraph service. He realized that 
the stragetic and commercial importance of the railroads 
would increase with the years. His plan was to purchase 
all the private lines and to join to the imperial system thus 
begun the railroads belonging to the individual states of 
the German Federation. His imperial scheme was defeated 
by the opposition of the separate states to the idea of sur- 
rendering their railroads into an imperial system. He did, 
however, succeed in carrying his plan through the Prussian 
parliament to apply to the railroads in Prussia. At the 
time, 14,000 kilometers of the 20,000 kilometers in Prussia 
were owned by private capital. These private lines were 
gradually acquired by the state, so that now Prussia owns 
and operates all of its railroads. 

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ii. Bismarck and the Foreign Situation 

During these years of internal reforms, Bismarck never 
lost his grasp. of the foreign situation. His problem was to 
keep the peace, to maintain the Triple Alliance, to check 
the formation of an opposing alliance, and to foster so far 
as possible friendly relations with his neighbors. The 
diflScult elements in the problem lay in the hostile attitude 
of powerful factions in Russia, including the Czar himself, 
in the conflict of interests between Austria-Hungary (Prus- 
sia's ally) and Russia, and in the disposition of a determined 
party in France to bring about a war of revenge. 

To Bismarck, the Russian attitude was more threatening 
than the French. He therefore exerted every endeavor 
to conciliate the Czar and the Russian people. His greatest 
success came in 1884 when he brought together in person 
the sovereigns of Austria-Hungary, Russia, and Germany 
and renewed the cordial understanding of the period before 
the Russo-Turkish war. At the same time he concluded 
with Russia a secret treaty by which each nation pledged 
itself to friendly neutrality in case the other were attacked. 
Hence in 1884 and 1885 Bismarck seemed to have estab- 
lished Germany in an unassailable position in international 
politics. Austria-Hungary and Italy were bound to her 
by the ties of the Triple Alliance; the Russian Czar had 
renewed the cordial understanding of previous years, and 
had guaranteed friendly neutrality in case of an attack 
upon Germany ; France had turned from the European field 
to waste money and strength in distant colonial enterprises. 

The situation, however, as the sequel showed, hung in a 
very delicate balance. The events of the years from 1885 
to 1888 seriously disturbed this balance. The crisis in the 
Near East, precipitated by the action of Eastern Rumelia 
in amalgamating with Bulgaria and by the short Serbo- 
Bulgarian war, revealed how diametrically opposed were 
the vital interests of Austria-Hungary and Russia. Austria- 

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Hungary forbade the Bulgarians to pursue the retreating 
Serbians upon threat of sending troops to defend Belgrade ; 
Alexander III made no secret of the fact, that, had troops 
been so used, Russia would have marched her armies to 
the aid of Bulgaria. The cordial understanding which Bis- 
marck had patched up two years before was irretrievably 

This disturbance was followed immediately (1886-1887) 
by the Boulangist excitement in France. Germany could 
not fail to be affected by Boulanger's thinly veiled threats 
of revenge, and by the strength of his political following. 
When Boulanger, as Minister of War in France, introduced 
a new law raising the peace strength of the French army to 
half a million men, Bismarck, as was natural, retaliated 
by advocating legislation raising the German army to the 
same number. In his speech before the Reichstag at the 
introduction of his army increase, the German Chancellor 
said : 

"We have no desire for war; we belong (to use an expression 
of Prince Mettemich's) to the states whose appetite is satisfied ; 
under no circumstances shall we attack France; the stronger we 
are, the more improbable is war; but if France has any reason 
to believe that she is more powerful than we, then war is certain." 

At this moment (1887-1888), the Czar, duped by some 
forged papers on the recent Near Eastern crisis into be- 
lieving that Bismarck had undermined Russian influences 
in Bulgaria in favor of Austria-Hungary, loc^sened the anti- 
German elements in Russia. The Russian press, in \dru- 
lent attacks upon Bismarck, demanded his resignation or 
immediate war. The Czar himself, traveling across Ger- 
many, ostentatiously avoided meeting the Emperor. Bis- 
marck had hardly exposed the forgery and restored friendly 
relations with Russia when, in 1888, the publication of the 
text of the Dual Alliance of 1879 between Austria-Hungary 
and Germany caused hostility in popular circles in Russia to 
blaze out anew. The Russian government had been secretly 

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informed of the Treaty of Dual Alliance shortly after it was 
made, but the Russian people were offended and startled 
by the revelation of the extent of the military preparations 
made by Austria-Hungary and Germany against them. 

In the face of such international complications, in Feb- 
ruary of 1888 Bismarck pleaded before the Reichstag for 
the passage of the army increase bill and for an appropria- 
tion of twenty-eight milhon marks for the purchase of 
munitions and suppUes. Rarely had he been more eloquent. 
Some striking sentences of his speech sounded like a threat, 
or at least a defiance of the European powers. He reviewed 
the events of the past generation, showing that scarcely 
a year had been free from the menace of a great European 
war, in which all the powers of Europe would divide into 
two hostile coalitions; he emphasized the fact that this 
menace would never cease ; he urged that Germany should 
be prepared : 

*' We must make greater exertions than other powers on account 
of our geographical position. We lie in the middle of Europe; 
we can be attacked on all sides. God has put us in a situation in 
which oiu: neighbors will not allow us to fall into indolence or 
apathy. The pike in the European pool prevent us from be- 
coming carp; but we must fulfill the designs of Providence by 
making ourselves so strong that the pike can do no more than 
amuse us. . . . 

" The fears that have arisen in the course of the present year 
have been caused by Russia more even than by Prance, chiefly 
through an exchange of provocations, threats, insults, and re- 
ciprocal investigations, which have occurred during the past 
sununer in the Russian and French press. . . . 

" God has given us on our flank the French, who are the most 
warlike and turbulent nation that exists, and Hc^ has permitted 
the development in Russia of warlike propensities which, until 
lately, did not manifest themselves to the same extent. . . . 

" It is not fear which makes us lovers of peace, but the con- 
sciousness of our own strength. By courtesy and kind methods 
we may be easily — too easily perhaps — influenced, but by 
means of threats, never. We Germans fear God and nothing 
else in the world." 

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These words were uttered in all the intensity of deep 
conviction. Bismarck unquestionably believed in his ability 
to maintain the peace in Europe even in the midst of his 
enemies. A few weeks later» March 9, 1888, the entire 
situation was changed by the death of the aged Emperor, 
William I, a few days before his ninety-jfirst birthday. 

iii. William II and the Resignation of Bismarck 

The year 1888 is known among Germans as the year of 
the three Emperors. William I, who died in March, was 
succeeded by his son, Frederick, who at his succession was 
in the last throes of suffering from cancer of the throat. 
Frederick died June 15 without having taken any measures 
of consequence during the few months he had reigned. His 
death elevated his son^ William, to the throne, under the 
title of William II. 

The whole of Europe waited to learn the character of the 
new Emperor, raised so suddenly and unexpectedly to power 
in Germany. William 11 was, in 1888, but twenty-nine 
years of age. He had, in the few months when his father 
was Emperor, indicated his intention of following the 
guidance of Bismarck. At a dinner, April 6, 1888, William 
proposed a toast to the great chancellor: "The Empire is 
like an army corps that has lost its commander-in-chief in 
the field, while the officer who stands next to him in rank 
lies severely wounded. At this critical moment forty-six 
million loyal German hearts turn with solicitude and hope 
toward the standard and the standard bearer, in whom all 
their expectations are centered. The standard bearer is 
our illustrious Prince, our great Chancellor. Let him lead 
us. We will follow him. Long may he live!" And this 
intention was further emphasized in his address to the Reichs- 
tag upon his accession, in which address the following 
extracts were especially noteworthy : 

" I have summoned you, Gentlemen, that I may make my dec- 
laration before you to the German people, that I am resolved, as 

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Emperor and King, to walk in the same path in which my illustrious 
grandfather won the confidence of his federal allies, the love of 
the German people, and the good will of other countries. Whether 
I also shall succeed in this rests with God, but I will earnestly and 
laboriously endeavor to attain this end. . . . 

" In foreign politics I am resolved, so far as in me lies, to main- 
tain peace with all men. My affection for the German army, and 
the position I hold toward it, will never lead me into the tempta- 
tion of jeopardizdng for my coimtry the benefits of peace, unless 
war be a necessity forced upon us by an attack upon the empire 
or its allies. Our army is meant to maintain peace, and to be in 
a position, if peace is broken, to win it back with honor. That 
it will be able to do with the help of God, through the strength 
which your recent unanimous vote has guaranteed to it. To use 
this strength for wars of aggression is very far from my heart. 
Germany requires neither added martial glory nor any fresh con- 
quests, now that she has definitely won the right in war to exist 
as a united and an independent nation. . . . 

" With trust in God and in the defensive power of our nation I 
feel confident that it will be granted to us to defend, and to con- 
firm by peaceful labor, what was won in arms under the leader* 
ship of my two predecessors on the throne, now resting in God. . . ." 

As the months passed, however, William 11 showed an 
increasing impatience at the methods and policies of his 
chancellor. The Emperor was young, energetic, ambitious, 
and impulsive. He thoroughly believed in the divine origin 
of his power, and avowed this belief openly and often. He 
had an exceptionally keen and well-trained mind, and an 
enormous capacity for hard work. At his succession, he 
found Bismarck actually wielding the Emperor's power in 
Germany. Bismarck himself was Imperial Chancellor, and 
head of the Bundesrath ; he was, also, Imperial Minister of 
Foreign Affairs, and Minister of Commerce ; he was, further, 
President of the Ministry in Prussia. He had, in addition 
to the offices, the immense prestige of his successes : he had 
carried his policies in the past against the will of his col- 
leagues, even at times against the will of the Emperor him- 
self ; he had opposed and defeated the Reichstag, and his 
acts had in the end been approved by that body ; he stood 

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forth as the greatest figure in the international diplomacy 
of Europe. Furthermore, he had so constituted the admin- 
istrative departments that their heads were men elected by 
him and responsible to him. His chief assistant in the 
Foreign Office was his son, Herbert; the Minister of the 
Interior was a cousin ; in critical affairs he depended upon 
the assistance of his own family or of his own private sec- 
retaries. The various ministers were not regarded as 
equals or as colleagues, but as subordinates. Thus the new 
Emperor, desirous of taking an active part in his govern- 
ment, found no duties allotted to him but to affix his imperial 
signature to the acts of his minister. William's suggestions 
of policy were coldly received or rejected as impracticable. 
His energetic journeys to and fro in his empire, his frequent 
trips to foreign lands, and his many speeches were strongly 
mticized in journals more or less under administration 
influence. Above all, his natiu^al and legitimate desire 
to consult openly and informally with any of his ministers 
on questions of imperial policy led to an open breach with 
the chancellor. The Emperor himself described the final 
incidents of this breach to Prince Hohenlohe : 

" Strassbubg, April 26, 1890. 

" I drove with the Emperor to the shooting box at Sufflenheim. 
It was about an hour's drive, and during this time the Emperor 
related the whole story of his differences with Bismarck without 
interruption. He said that relations had become strained as 
early as December. The Emperor then desired that something 
should be done upon the question of the workingmen. The 
Chancellor objected. . . . 

" This friction had considerably disturbed the relations between 
Bismarck and the Emperor, and these were further strained by the 
question of the cabinet regulations of 1852. Bismarck had often 
advised the Emperor to grant the ministers access to himself, and 
this was done. But when communication between the Emperor 
and his ministers became more frequent, Bismarck took offense, 
became jealous, and revived the cabinet regulations of 1852 in 
order to interrupt communications between the emperor and his 

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ministers. The Emperor protested and demanded the repeal of 
the regulation; Bismarck made a show of consent, but nothing 
was done in the matter. The Emperor therefore demanded that 
he should either issue an order repealing the regulation, or hand 
in his resignation. This decision the Emperor communicated to 
Prince Bismarck through Hahnke. The prince hesitated, but 
gave in his resignation on March 18." 

The final incidents related by persons friendly to Bis- 
marck showed more clearly the quarrel between the two 
men. When the Emperor insisted that his wishes must 
be observed, if not by Bismarck, then by another^ Bismarck 
asked, speaking in English, ^^Then I am to understand, 
your majesty, that I am in your way?" The Emperor 
answered, "Yes." Bismarck immediately left to draw up 
his formal resignation. After twenty-eight years of service, 
however, it is not easy to frame such a document. The 
Emperor heard that the leader of the parliamentary oppo- 
sition had visited Bismarck at his home. Fearing some 
intrigue, he sent an urgent message demanding the resig- 
nation at once^ Bismarck made no reply. Early the fol- 
lowing morning, the Emperor in person drove to Bismarck's 
house. The Chancellor was summoned from bed. The 
Emperor demanded to know what had taken place upon 
the previous afternoon's interview and stated that ministers 
were not to discuss political questions with parliamentary 
leaders without the imperial approval. Bismarck refused 
to aUow any supervision over his guests in his own house. 

"Not if I command it as your sovereign?" asked William. 

"No," replied Bismarck, "the commands of my King 
cease in my wife's drawing-room." 

No reconciliation was possible after this incident. Bis- 
marck hastily prepared and tendered his resignation. The 
Emperor attempted in his letter of acceptance to make it 
appear that the resignation was voluntary and friendly. 
He raised Bismarck to the rank of Field Marshal in the army 
and created him Duke of Lauenburg. 

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Strong arguments, supported by some significant evidence, 
have been advanced to prove that the break between William 
II and Bismarck resulted from deeper and more important 
causes than those outlined above. It is said that the two 
men were irreconcilably opposed with respect to the imperial 
policy to be adopted toward Russia. Bismarck, it is well 
known, had gone out of his way to conciliate the great Slav 
power. Even after the break which occurred as a result 
of the German attitude in the Congress of Berlin, Bismarck 
had revived with some success the friendly relations between 
Germany and Russia, and had even succeeded in 1884 
and 1887 in arranging for a Russo-German military con- 
vention. In 1890 it was time for a renewal of the agree- 
ments between the two states. Russia was in a receptive 
mood, but Germany withheld her oflPer and allowed the 
agreements to lapse. It was just at this time that Bismarck 
resigned* It is argued that he insisted upon the renewal, 
and that the Emperor absolutely refused. Some color is 
given to these arguments by the viciousness with which 
journals inspired by Bismarck after the bi^each attacked 
the Russian policy of the Emperor and criticized the 
diplomacy which resulted in the formation of the Dual 

Thus passed from the field of active participation in events 
the most conspicuous figure of the age. No honors could 
compensate him for the manner of his retirement. He 
became an embittered critic of the Emperor and of imperial 
policies. To the pilgrims who visited him in his retirement, 
to the political gossip-gatherers, and to newspaper reporters, 
he said many imwise things. He dictated his Reflections 
and Reminiscences, in them laying bare to an astonished 
Germany the machinations by which their unity had been 
achieved. He had never been a man who admitted many 
to intimate friendship, so that after the death of his wife 
and brother he suffered from loneliness. In 1895 a peace 
was patched up between him and the Emperor : the Emperor 

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visited the aged statesman upon his birthday at his country 
house, and Bismarck returned the call at the Emperor's 
palace in Berlin. We may well believe, however, tha^ the 
reconciliation was but superficial. The great chancellor 
died July 31, 1898. His epitaph, according to his own 
desire, was: "A faithful servant of Emperor William I." 

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Since 1871, the time of the completion of German Unity, 
and even more completely since 1879, the time of the forma- 
tion of the German-Austrian alliance, Bismarck had domi- 
nated international politics on the continent of Europe. 
His downfall in 1890, therefore, sent a thrill through all the 
European chancelleries. The new German Emperor was 
at this period an unknown quantity. However much the 
Iron Chancellor had upon occasions ''rattled the sword^'* 
his influence in European affairs since 1871 had, it was gen- 
erally recognissed, been instrumental in keeping the peace : 
his sudden and unexpected displacement might mean the 
inauguration on the part of the yoimg and inexperienced 
Emperor of a new policy which would ultimately lead to 
war. Certain of William II's public acts and utterances 
were capable of being interpreted as indicative of his reli- 
ance upon force in international relations. The sedate 
statesmen in diplomatic affairs distrusted the sovereign's 
youth, his impulsive energy, and his assumption of the 
reins of government over the heads of his ministers. The 
leaders in each of the great continental powers felt it neces- 
sary to take immediate steps for protection in case their 
worst fears were realized. 


The first definite momentous result of Bismarck's fall 
from power was the establishment of an understanding , an 


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Entente^ between Russia and France. This understanding^ 
it has been pointed out, was a logical outcome of the forma- 
tion of the Triple Alliance in 1882; but by Bismarck's 
unremitting skill and tact it had been delayed during his 
continuance in office. The old German Chancellor had 
artfully intimated to the Russian Czar the dangers of an 
alliance between his autocratic country and a state wherein 
revolutions and the revolutionary spirit were rife; he had 
encouraged France in her expensive colonial acquisitions^ 
he had connived at Russia's far-eastern policies; he had 
striven to maintain the most cordial relations between 
Germany and France on the one hand and between Grer- 
many and Russia on the other, so that no temptation for 
the creation of an opposing alliance might exist. His diplo- 
macy had met with marked success. Inmiediately after 
he lost power, however, the influences keeping Prance and 
Russia apart ceased, and the reasons for an understanding 
between them loomed above all other considerations. 
France could never forget the humiliating defeats of 1870 
and 1871 ; she could not forgive the loss of Alsace and Lor- 
raine ; she thought of the German threats of war in 1875 ; 
she feared the increased German army to be provided by 
the recent army bill of 1889. Russia on her part held Ger- 
many responsible for her failure in the Congress of Berlin ; 
she realized more and more keenly the irreconcilable con- 
flict between her interests in the Balkan regions and the 
interests of Germany's ally, Austria-Hungary; and she, 
too, feared the threat of an increased German army. Thus 
on the part of both states national sentiment against Ger- 
many combined with the need of national security to favor 
an alliance. 

A material basis for a friendly understanding was estab- 
lished even before Bismarck's fall from power. Russia 
was always in need of funds for the exploitation of her enor- 
mous natural resources and for the development of her 
industries. Her credit was considered good. For some 

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years previous to 1888, she had obtained these necessary 
funds from a group of German bankers. In that year, 
however, after some reluctance on the part of this group to 
float a further loan, she welcomed a suggestion from France 
that the loan be offered on the French market for popular 
subscription. The Russian securities, to the amount of 
five hundred million francs, were quickly absorbed by the 
French investors. In the two years following, two more 
loans, each of a similar amount to the first, were equally 
well received by the French. More than a hundred thou- 
sand people subscribed. So long as the Russian credit was 
good, the government saw the possibility of obtaining 
further huge sums for her development from the French. 
These successful financial transactions created a highly 
favorable atmosphere for diplomacy. 

The retirement of Bismarck gave the French leaders 
the opportunity to press the negotiations to a conclusion. 
Within a few weeks after his fall from power the French 
minister of the interior arrested a group of Russian Terrorists 
who were in Paris preparing explosives for an attempt 
upon the Czar's life. In the summer of the same year, 
the French Minister of War contributed further to the good 
feeling between the two governments by turning over for 
Russian uses the huge arms manufactory at ChAtellerault. 
The final act was staged publicly for the benefit of popular 
opinion. In the summer of 1891 the French fleet anchored 
in Russian waters off Kronstadt. The Czar made a formal 
visit to the flagship and stood with bared head while the 
French bands played the national airs of the two countries. 
The French officers were ffeted by the Russians, and the 
French sailors fraternized on the most friendly terms with 
the sailors of the Russian ships in the harbor. This little 
theatrical display met with considerable success: it was 
hailed with transports of joy in France and assured popular 
approval of the pending alliance. A few weeks later, 
August 22, 1891, a treaty between the representatives of 

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the two countries was signed ; in June of the following year 
a military convention completed the alliance. 

The terms of the treaty have never officially been made 
public. According to unofficial reports, it contains no 
specific reference to any power of the Triple Alliance, no 
statement of duration, but is a document of a few provisions 
declaring that if either nation be attacked, the other will 
come to its aid with all its powers, and that peace shall 
only be concluded in concert and by mutual agreement. 
Thus in its general nature it is exactly similar to the treaty 
at the base of the Triple Alliance. 



The formation of this alliance, this Dual Entente^ pro- 
foundly altered the international political situation in Europe. 
It was a step toward an equilibrium of forces, a Balance 
of Power. In one pan of the scales lay the Triple Alliance ; 
over agaiost it in the other pan lay the Duai Entente. 
The Entente was undoubtedly popular in Russia, but the 
Russians did not have as much to gain from it at the moment, 
apparently, as the Ffench. It was the French who had 
taken the initiative in the proceedings leading up to the 
treaty, and it was the French who gave the most open mani- 
festations of approval afterwards. French statesmen were 
aware how their country had been isolated in Europe ; they 
had resented the dictatorship of Germany over continental 
affairs. In their opinion, the Entente rescued France from 
her isolation and broke the German dictatorship. Un- 
doubtedly, too, a large group in France hailed the Entente 
as the first step toward a successful war of revenge. Even 
though it was common knowledge that the understanding 
and military convention were upon a defensive basis, these 
** patriots" looked forward confidently to a war against 
Germany wherefrom France would emerge with Alsace 

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and Lorraine and the huge indemnity which had been wrested 
from her after the Franco-Prussian war. 

More important than its eflfect upon the status of popu- 
lar sentiment in France and Russia, however, was the eflfect 
of the Balance of Power upon the general condition of 
aflfairs in Europe. The early years of the nineteenth cen- 
tury had seen what was called the Concert of Powers: 
the change from that condition to the Balance of Power 
was one that brought a constant peril of a great European 
war. The term "Concert of Powers" is applied to that 
unity of policy and action with which the great powers of 
Europe considered and decided conflicting issues in Euro- 
pean politics during the years following the fall of Napo- 
leon I. This unity sprang out of the Quadruple Alliance 
against Napoleon: it was continued after his downfall 
under the influence of Prince Metternich of Austria. It 
acted with greatest harmony and influence from 1818 to 1822 ; 
it had great power over continental affairs up to the fall 
of Metternich in 1848; it continued in existence, though 
with diminished harmony, in connection with affairs in the 
Near East until the Congress of Berlin in 1878. Its greatest 
contribution to European politics was the establishment 
of the custom of Congresses, in which the diplomats of the 
great powers met, considered, and decided upon issues 
between separate states. At the height of its prestige it 
occupied the place of an international tribunal on all matters 
affecting Europe at large. Its purpose was primarily and 
always the maintenance of general European peace through- 
out all the involved disputes which might arise between 
individual states* Its general policies were guided by 
recognition of the fact that each and every great state in 
Europe had a vital interest in any and all territorial changes, 
and that any arrangement involving such changes could 
be more peacefully settled by agreement among the mili- 
tary powers than by separate negotiations between indi- 
vidual countries. Thus, though the system established 

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by the Concert of Powers ultimately broke down, it was 
throughput its existence a factor in the maintenance of 

Contrast with this system the state of affairs brought 
about by the Balance of Power. No better condition for 
causing friction, or for magnifying the amount of friction, 
between European states could have been created. The 
two alliances were mutually hostile. Even though in the 
treaties the names of states were not openly mentioned, it 
was common knowledge that Germany, Austria-Hungary, 
and Italy were leagued against Russia and France, and vice 
versa. The alliances were unlike previous alliances in recent 
European history, for those previous alliances had been 
formed in the presence of great issues and had been promptly 
dissolved once the crisis had passed. Thus the continental 
alliance against France did not survive the Congress of 
Vienna, and the alliance against Russia fell apart immedi- 
ately after the Crimean war. The Triple Alliance and 
the Dtud Entente, however, were formed at a time when no 
critical issues of vital importance were p^ending ; they were 
intended to have a degree of permanence; and they were 
regarded by each nation as an insurance of its individual 
rights against the encroachment by any other state. Hence, 
whereas under the conditions established by the Concert 
of Powers, a dispute between two states was the signal 
for a European Congress in which the issue would be dis- 
cussed and settled peaceably, under the conditions estab- 
lished by the Balance of Power such a dispute became at 
once the occasion for general war preparations on the part 
of the two great opposing military alliances. The field of 
individual disputes was thus greatly widened. The policy 
of a single state, the policy which was regarded by it as of 
vital importance, became perforce the policy of all the 
states of its alliance. France could not raise and settle a 
dispute with Germany without involving Russia, Austria- 
Hungary, and Italy ; and similarly, Russia could not come 

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into conflict with Austria-Hungary (over the Balkans, for 
example, which Bismarck had once declared not worth the 
bones of a single Pomeranian grenadier) without dragging 
in Germany, Italy, and France. 

In addition to these results, the Balance of Power was 
directly responsible for turning Europe into a collection 
of armed camps. With two huge opposing alliances, rivalry 
in military forces and armaments was inevitable. Neither 
alliance, though formed for defensive purposes, could afford 
to allow the states of the opposing alliance to be better pre- 
pared than were the states of its league. Any improvement 
in military equipment, any increase in the number of forces, 
was at once met by corresponding measures in other states. 
All the resources of science were employed to increase the 
eflfectiveness of engines of military use. Each discovery 
was seized upon, developed, and utilized chiefly for its use 
in war. New explosives, automobiles, submarines, aSro- 
planes, the wireless telegraph, all were adopted into the 
military systems to give some slight handicap in the race. 
The expenses of the armaments were enormous. The taxes 
were raised, and the sums spent for other than military 
purposes cut down. The people through their parliaments 
consented regularly to the expenditures on the ground that 
they were necessary for defense. Europe bristled with 
guns and well-drilled armies, all avowedly for defense, but 
all ready for instant war. Such a situation in itself con- 
stituted an ever-present peril. 



Thus a year after he had dismissed his experienced Chan- 
cellor, the young German Emperor faced the difficult 
foreign situation brought about by the Dual Entente. 
He was in every sense the personal director of the govern- 
ment. Bismarck's successor, Count Caprivi, was recognized 

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both in Germany and abroad as being merely the official 
mouthpiece of his Emperor, and not in any sense as being 
himself the molder of German policy. 

The purpose of the Emperor*s diplomacy was to main* 
tain German leadership in international affairs in Europe 
in spite of the creation of the Dual Entente. The means 
by which he attempted to accomplish this end were the 
studied cultivation of cordial relations with both members 
of the Entente and the maintenance of the traditional 
friendship between Germany (or Prussia, before the forma- 
tion of the German Empire) and Great Britain. It was, of 
course, Germany's advantage to have her natural opponents 
involved in foreign and domestic difficulties, for such troubles 
would render them less able to dispute Germany. If the 
relations between Russia and Great Britain were strained, 
there was less probability of Russia and France being in a 
position to dictate European policies to Germany. 

i. Internal Affairs in France 

Events in France and Russia for a long time favored 
William II's diplomacy. In France the revelations dis- 
closed during the successive trials for treason of a certain 
artillery captain, Alfred Dreyfus, stirred the nation to its 
depths, and caused factions which for years paralyzed polit- 
ical action. Dreyfus was first tried in 1894, and, upon the 
evidence of some memoranda supposedly in his handwriting, 
convicted. The incident seemed to be closed. A few years 
later, however, suspicion leaked out that the real traitor 
was being shielded, and that Dreyfus was suffering a terrible 
and undeserved punishment. Attempts to gain a new 
trial for the officer were thwarted by high army officiab. 
The public became interested. If Dreyfus were really 
guilty, why should the army object to proving his guilt 
beyond the shadow of a doubt ? The support of the Catlu>- 
lic Church, which had from the beginning of the republic 
been hostile to the government, was thrown to the side of 

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the army, thus introducing a religious element into the 
issue. Since Dreyfus was a Jew, racial and social preju- 
dices were aroused. Zola» the great novelist, interested 
himself in the case, became certain that Dreyfus had been 
unjustly convicted, and used all the great power of his pen 
in arousing the nation. By the summer of 1898 all France 
was torn by political factions resulting from the case. In 
August, 1898, a certain Colonel Henry, confessing that he 
had forged one of the documents by which Dreyfus had 
been convicted, committed suicide. In June of 1899 a 
Major Esterhazy, long known to be worthless and unprin- 
cipled, fled to England and confessed that he had himself 
written another of the documents on which Dreyfus had 
been convicted. Public pressure was so great that Dreyfus 
was brought from his confinement on Devil's Island for a 
retrial in August, 1899. The army was determined, in spite 
of the revelations that had been made, to convict him again 
for the honor of the service. He did not receive a fair trial. 
The case against him was shown to be, in the words of the 
London Times^ "foul with forgeries, lies, contradictions, 
and puerilities." He was, however, by the court-martial 
declared guilty "with extenuating circumstances" — a 
remarkable verdict in a case of the treason of an army 
officer. The court had thus attempted to uphold the honor 
of the army. Although the President of the Republic 
pardoned Dreyfus, and the parliament passed in 1900 an 
amnesty bill for all implicated, thus attempting to end the 
case, Dreyfus and his adherents demanded a full vindica- 
tion. This was finally obtained by a new trial before the 
Supreme Court of France (the Court of Cassation) in 1906. 
Dreyfus was triumphantly acquitted, restored to the army 
with the rank of major, and invested with the cross of the 
Legion of Honor. 

The political turmoil accompanying the Dreyfus case had 
torn France for a decade. The conditions in the army had 
shocked the nation. If the people could not trust the honor 

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of the- army, what could they trust? All the elements 
hostile to liberal republican government in France had 
flocked to the anti-Dreyfus party. Clericals, monarchists, 
the remnants of Boulanger's Nationals, — these men, 
striving to discredit the government, had supported the 
army. On the other hand, united with those who believed 
in the innocence of Dreyfus were the liberals who were 
bent on maintaining the authority of the government over 
the power of the army, who were anxious to combat race 
prejudice, and who were devoted to the continuance of the 
existing form of government. The trial had thus become 
the focus for a critical internal political struggle for the 
existence of liberal institutions in France. The final vic- 
tory of the government was a triumph for liberalism. 

ii. French Colonial Policy 

During this same period, France was committing herself 
to a colonial policy designed to make real the magnificent 
dream of Jules Ferry in the early 80's of a French-African 
empire which should include the entire northern part of 
Africa. Gabriel Hanotaux, a foreign minister from 1894 to 
1898, had imbibed from Ferry the enthusiasm for colonial 
dominion. Regarding England as a certain enemy to his 
ideals, he turned to Germany for support. In the German 
foreign office his approaches were received in a most friendly 
spirit. The Emperor himself took occasion to express 
his satisfaction at Germany's relations with France and his 
hope that the basis for a friendly understanding or alliance 
might be laid. Hanotaux's policies, however, brought 
his country to the brink of war against England. In the 
Egyptian Soudan the territorial claims of the two European 
countries sharply clashed. The Fashoda incident in 1898 * 
was the culmination of a series of colonial disputes. France 
was brought to the very brink of war, only drawing back 
because internal discussions over the Dreyfus case and the 

* See Uie following chapter, pp. 3d6 to 339. 

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weakness of the army and navy made it evident that she 
could not win. 

Thus by its internal dissensions and by the complications 
resulting from its colonial enterprises, France was playing 
into the hands of Germany. William 11 could feel that 
German hegemony was secure. His policy was succeeding. 

iii. RtLssian Colonial Expansion 

Russia^ the other member of the Dual Entente, was 
during this period concentrating her interest upon her 
expansion in Asia. In central Asia, in Persia, Afghanistan, 
and Thibet, the activities of Russian agents aroused the 
suspicions and hostihty of the British. In the Far East, 
where Russia had reached the Pacific Ocean, she was now 
seeking to push her boundaries to the southward to get a 
year-round ice-free port. She started the great Trans- 
Siberian railroad in 1891, intending thus to consolidate her 
power over her vast empire. 

The special opportunity for Germany to show her friendly 
attitude toward Russia's plans in the East came just after the 
China-Japanese war in 1894. The provisions of the Treaty 
of Shimonoseki which ended that war gave Japan the Liao- 
Tung peninsula with its fijie harbor and strong fortress of 
Port Arthur. The possession of this peninsula by Japan 
conflicted with Russia's plans. She sought aid to make an 
eflFective protest. Germany joined Russia and France in 
forcing Japan to revise the provisions of the treaty and give 
up her foothold on the Asiatic continent. It seemed as 
though Germany, a member of the Triple Alliance, might 
enter into an understanding with the states of the Dual 
Entente. When Russia continued to press her influence 
over the Chinese province of Manchuria, she had Germany's 
support ; when Russia leased Port Arthur and stretched her 
railroad lines south from Harbin, she acted with the Em- 
peror's knowledge and approval. 

Thus in the case of Russia as in that of France, diplo- 

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mats danced to the German Emperor's music. By recog> 
nizing the concentration of Russian interest upon events 
and opportunities in the Far East, the German Emperor 
could assure himself that the Czar would not show a dis- 
position to interfere in Europe. Russia, with the bitter 
hostility of Great Britain along the central Asian boundaries, 
with absorbing interests in Manchuria and Port Arthur, 
and with Japan making unmistakable preparations for 
opposition, was in no position to take a leading part in in- 
ternational politics on the continent. 


n Attitude toward Oreat Britain 

his avowa ls of frie ndship ^'^^ J^j;;r-5!;!^^rj .^Misifl ffftrr Qff^*^*^- 
ing in any way the corcfial relations which had long existed 
between GerEoany a nd Grea t Britain^ Bismarck had made 
trienHship with Great Britain a cardinal point in his foreign 
poliq3l|during the whole of his long and uninterrupted power ; 
the Emperor adopted the policy as his own upon his ac- 
cession. The few conflicts in colonial claims were si>eedily 
adjusted in agreements between the two governments. 
The continual friction between the individual members of 
the Dual Entente and Great Britain naturally inclined 
Great Britain toward Germany. Further, so long as British 
statesmen clung to their policy of non-interference and 
"splendid isolation," there was no prospect of a clash 
between Great Britain and Germany over in ternational 
European politic s. The close friendship between the two 
countries continued up to the very end of the century. 
In a speech of 1899, just after the treaty which divided the 
Samoan islands and secured for Germany the chief one of 
the group. Lord Salisbury (prime minister) said : 

"This morning you have learned of the arrangements concluded 
between us and one of the continental states with whom more 
than with others we have for years maintained sympathetic and 

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friendly relations. The arrangement is above all interesting as 
an indication that our relations with the Grerman nation are all 
that we could desire." 

The ^f^rmnn Fiinppr^/i^ ^fli^ himself open, it is true, to 
charges of inconsistency, for to the superficial observer he 
was at one moment pro -French, at another pro-Russian,, 
and ftgaj n pi*^?TitiflhA Hia pnliry succeeded, however, 
in its main purpose: he l^ept the peace in Europe, and 
maintained Germany in her position as the chief figure in 
European politics. Indeed, when the world saw Germany, 
France, and Russia uniting in a protest to Japan, and the 
fleets of France and Russia assembled with the German 
ships to celebrate the opening of the Elel canal, it seemed 
that the two great alliances might lose their mutuq^Uy hos- 
tile character for good and all. The Emperor had eflFectually 
neutralized the results of the formation of the Dual Entente. 


An entirely new turn to the international situation was 
given in the early years of the twentieth century when 
Great Britain abandoned her traditional poUcy of '* splendid 
isolation," and approached Germany's enemies in the effort 
to arrange a peaceful understanding on disputed issues. 
British diplomats were forced to this new position because 
of the growing alarm caused by the revelation of the extent 
and nature of Germany's plans. 

i. Tjpfsde Rivalry between Oreat Britain and Oermany 

teven before Lord Salisbury's speech emphasizing the 
excellent relations between Great Britain and (Jermany, 
much ill- ff^ling had been arauaedia sections of .Gtreat Britain 
bv the serJQ^ia inroRds whiVh GprmftTiv had maf^e upnn 
British co Tnm^ir^*^. Although British merchants by virtue 
of Great Britain's commanding position in the commercial 
world should have gained the hon's share of the huge in- 

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crease in commerce, statistics showed that they had not. 
The telltale figures proved that/Germany was forging ahead 
at a rate far in excess of Great Britain's rate| Even though 
Great Britain's great handicap in the rivalry for the world's 
market kept her total amount of business above that of 
Germany, the latter's increases had brought her from an 
insignificant position in 1871 up to the position of Great 
Britain's chief competitor in 1900. Germany had out- 
stripped all other rivals. 

Comparative statistics indicate more graphically than 
any general statements can the comparative industrial 
development in the two countries. To bring forth the full 
significance of the statistics, we shall give the actual figures 
covering a single generation, from 1875 to 1905, and the 
percentage of increase. 

Great Britain's population in 1875 was 33,000,000; in 
1905 was 43,000,000 — an increase of 30j%. Germany's 
population in 1875 was 42,500,000 ; in 1905 was 60,000,000 
— an increase of 41+%. 

Great Britain's production of coal in 1876 waa 132,000,000 
tons; in 1905 was 236,000,000 tons — an increase of 
78+%. Germany's production of coal and lignite in 1875 
was 47,800,000 tons; in 1905 was 173,000,000 tons — an 
increase of 260+%. 

Great Britain's production of pig iron in 1875 was 6,860,- 
000 tons; in 1905 was 9,600,000 tons — an increase of 
51+%. Germany's production of pig iron in 1876 was 
2,000,000 tons; in 1905 was 10,800,000 — an increase of 
440%, and a total of 1,200,000 tons greater than that of 

Great Britain's merchant marine consisted in 1875 of 
21,000 sailing vessels with a net tonnage of 4,000,000 tons 
and of 4000 steam vessels with a net tonnage of 2,000,000 
tons, totaling together 25,000 vessels with a tonnage of 
6,000,000 tons ; in 1905 it consisted of 10,000 sailing vessels 
with a net tonnage of 1,600,000 tons, and 10,500 steam 

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vessels with a net tonnage of 9,000,000 tons, totaling to- 
gether 20,000 vessels with a tonnage of 10,600,000. The 
increase in tonnage was thus 76+%. Germany's mer- 
chant marine consisted in 1875 of 4300 sailing vessels with 
a net tonnage of 875,000 tons, and of 300 steam vessels 
with a net tonnage of 200,000 tons, totaling together 4600 
vessels with a net tonnage of 1,075,000 tons; in 1905 it 
consisted of 2300 sailing vessels with a net tonnage of 540,- 
000 tons and of 1600 steam vessels with a net tonnage of 
2,900,000 tons, totaling together 3900 vessels with a 
net tonnage of 3,440,000 tons. The increase in tonnage 
was thus 220+%. 

Great Britain's total import and export business in 1875 
was $3,250,000,000; in 1905 was $4,850,000,000 — an 
increase of 49+%. Germany's total import and export 
business in 1875 was $1,500,000,000; in 1905 wss $3,300,- 
000,000 — an increase of 120%. 

These figures indicate a marvelous growth on the part of 
Germany, when we consider that she entered the compe- 
tition late, after the best of the markets had long been in 
the hands of her rivals. It is worth while to emphasize 
briefly the means by which she forged ahead so rapidly 
in the struggle. The use of scientific methods in every 
minute detail of production, transportation, and market- 
ing seems to be the key to the enigma. German KuUur 
has been defined as ^'the application of a trained intelli- 
gence* to the practical affairs of life": nowhere has this 
Kultur been more efficient than in the world of business and 
trade. The German producer has learned how to apply 
the latest developments of science or machinery to his 
methods and thus bring forth a product which can be put 
upon the market at a lower price than that asked by his 
competitors. Further, the marketing of German products 
has been intrusted to young men especially trained in techni- 
cal schools and by foreign travel for the purpose. Thus 
in the first place, German goods are cheaper ; in the second 

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place, by means of coSperation between the expert sales- 
men and the manufacturer, they are made to fit the peculiar 
individual needs of the customers. The Germans have 
shown marvelous adaptability in their commercial methods. 
Where their British rivals, following traditional customs, 
offer standard wares in standard forms and demand instant 
payment through British banking houses, the Germans, 
after studying the markets, have offered wares made espe- 
cially to suit the particular needs or pecuhar styles of a 
selected region, and have conformed to the habits of the 
purchasing section in the matter of payment. The more 
complete satisfaction of the customer with less expensive 
and just as serviceable wares, both obtained by the appli- 
cation of scientific methods to each little detail of business, 
has brought a well-deserved success to German industries 
and foreign trade. 

The Germans have been fully conscious of the significance 
of this industrial and conunercial development. With 
this consciousness has grown a sense of their own impor- 
tance in the world. Bismarck once remarked in the early 
days before he was chancellor: ^^I don't know how we 
Germans got the reputation for retiring modesty. There 
isn't a single man* of us who doesn't think that he under- 
stands everything, from strategy to picking fleas off a dog, 
better than professionals who have devoted their lives to 
it." If the sense of their own importance had remained 
merely a personal characteristic of the individual Grermans, 
it would not have been important enough to notice 
in this narrative; but when it became a national char- 
acteristic and began to influence the policy of the gov- 
ernment, it grew to be a disturbing element in intemar 
tional affairs. 

This industrial prosperity reacted upon the political 
situation in Germany to make her abandon her purely 
national aspirations and embark upon colonial enterprises.^ 

^ See f oDowing ehapter. 

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The widened horizon thus revealed to German thinkers 
led them to look forward to the establishment of Germany, 
not only as the chief power in continental Europe, but as 
one of the most important powers in world politics as well. 
As German colonies increased in number, size, and wealth, 
and as G^man commerce in German ships penetrated to 
the farthest seas, the German theorists argued that Ger- 
many must prepare herself at once to have a share in the 
world politics of the future. Her increase in population, 
her colonial e3q[)ansion, her far-flung commercial interests 
demanded, in the opinion of an important body of her people, 
that she should take her place as an equal with the greatest 
in all questions of world dominion. 

"u. German Naval Increase 

The study of the situation in the light of their theories 
disclosed at once a fundamental weakness of Germany — 
her lack of a powerful navy. TTntil phe onnlH pi ftce up on 
the seas a n avy equal ship for ship to that of the gre atest 
naval bower, she g guW not hope f.9 make Ti er wisfies'or]' 
weight in the solution of the great problems of world poli-_^ 
GSu A small Ijnt' very earnest and energetic body of think- 
4m, Inspired with this idea, set to work to foster a senti- 
ment throughout Germany for a great increajse in naval 

The possibility of building up within a short time a navy 
equal to that of Great Britain did not at the time (1890) 
seem unduly difficult. Although in numbers Great Britain's 
ships were overwhelming, modem inventions had rendered 
most of them of an obsolete and useless type. The creation 
of Great Britain's present magnificent and efficient navy 
dates from the Naval Defense Act of 1889. In that Act, 
provision was made for the construction of 70 men-of-war, 
to include 10 battleships, within the next seven years. 
In his statement advocating this Act before the House of 

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Commons, Lord Hamilton, the first Lord of the Admiralty 
in Lord Salisbury's cabinet, announced the policy of the 
government to be an "establishment on such a scale that 
it should be at least equal to the naval strength of any two 
other nations." This two-power standard, as the policy 
was popularly called, was, however, at that time adopted 
tacitly against France and Russia, and its disposition was 
in waters where it would be available against the naval 
strength of these powers. Hence, had Germany begun 
an aggressive naval program in 1890, her efforts would 
actually have been welcomed by Great Britain, and she 
might have occupied by 1900 a most favorable position upon 
the seas. The force of the propaganda of the "big navy" 
advocates in Germany, however, did not bear fruit until 
the very end of the century. 

The foundations^ of Germany's na val policy were laid b y 
Adiniral Tirpitz, appointed Secretory of State for the Navy 
in 1897._]TBs first naval estimate, presented to the Reichs- 
tag in 1898, provided for 19 battleships, 8 coast defen se 
yessels, and 42 cruisers.^ He had the utmost difliculty in 
securing the passage of this Act on March 28, 1898. It 
was evident that, if Germany were to make an effort at 
great naval strength, the sentiment in the Reichstag must 
be radically changed. To effect this change, prominent 
advocates of an aggressive naval building policy founded, 
April SO, 1898, a month after the passage of the naval 
act, the famous German Navy League {Deutsche FloUen- 
verein). Prince Henry of Prussia, brother of the Emperor, 
became honorary president. Prince William of Wied the 
chairman, and the popular Grand Duke of Baden an honor- 
ary member. The purpose of the League was to arouse 
national interest in, and enthusiasm for, a great navy. By 
the distribution of literature, by lectures, bazaars, motion 
picture performances, and the like, the people, especially 
those of the younger generation, in the inland districts were 
made familiar with naval problems and naval ideals. By 

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the b^inning of 1900, less than two years after its founda- 
tion, the society had established 286 local branches and 
had 250,000 contributing members; by 1901, the local 
branches had increased to 1000 and the membership to 
500,000 ; by 1904, the local branches had increased to 3600 
and the membership to 635,000. From its very founda- 
tion it bent its main efforts along political lines, to bring 
such pressure upon the Reichstag that that body would 
grant the enormous credits asked for naval expansion. In 
1900 it had its first notable success. Ja nuary 25 of that 
y ear the most celebrate fl naval hill wrj^ introduced, provide 
Jng^thaLhy 19(t?. tJie German flee t shou ld consist o f 38 battle- 
"sKips, 14 la rge an d 38 light cruis ers, with the necessary small 
'shipff'ljr other kinds. The Bill was accompanied by a 
naemorandum with the following striking paragraphs : 

"To protect (Germany's sea trade and colonies, in the existing 
circumstances, there is only one means: Germany must have a 
battle fleet so strong that even for an adversary with the greatest 
sea power a war against it would involve such dangers as to im- 
peril his own position in the world. 

" For this purpose it is not absolutely necessary that the Ger- 
man battle fleet should be as strong as that of the greatest naval 
Power, because a great naval Power will not, as a rule, be in a 
position to concentrate all its striking forces against us. But 
even if it should succeed in meeting us with considerable superi- 
ority of strength, the defeat of a strong German fleet would so 
substantially weaken the enemy, that in spite of a victory he might 
have obtained, his own position in the world would no longer be 
secured by an adequate fleet." 

The words and attitude of the sovereign in his speeches 
during this same period showed how closejj;_cpnnejetfid-. 
this movement for a great navv was with the national^ 
aspirations for 3_ leading part in world politics. At 
the farewelT dinner of his brother, Prince Henry of 
Prussia, when the latter was sailing with his squadron 
in 1897 to assume the German control of Kiauchau, 
the Emperor said : 

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''May every European out there, German merchants, and, 
above i^, natives, clearly see that the German Michael has firmJ^ 
planted his escutcheon with the imperial eagle in the soil in order 
to give protection to those who desire it. And may our country- 
men out there, priests, or merchants, or whatever they may be, 
rest assured that the protection of the German Empire, in the 
form of the Emperor's warships, will steadfastly be vouchsafed 
them. But if anyone should venture to wound or injure us in 
our good right, then up and at him with your mailed fist.'* 

Again in 1900, at the launching of the battleship Wittelsbachf 
he spoke even more plainly : 

''The wave-beat knocks profoundly at our national gates and 
calls us as a great nation to maintain our place in the world, in 
other words to follow world policy. The ocean is indispensable 
for Germany's greatness, but the ocean also reminds us that 
neither on it nor across it in the distance can any great decision 
be again consummated without Germany and the German Em- 
peror. It is not my opinion that our German people conqu^ed 
and bled thirty years ago under the leadership of their princes in 
order to be pushed on one side when great and momentous foreign 
decisions are reached. Were that so there would once for all be 
an end of the world power of the German nation, and I am not 
going to allow that to happen. To use the fittest and if necessary 
the most drastic means to prevent this is not only my duty but 
my noblest privilege." 

And upon another occasion during the same year he said : 

"I hope that it will be granted to our German fatherland to 
become in the future as closely united, as powerful, and as author- 
itative as once the Roman world empire was, and that just as in 
old times they said, Cwis ramanus sum, one in the future need 
only to say, Ich h^ ein deuLacher Burger** 

German Colonial Development 

With such encouragement from the head of their govern- 
ment Germans pushed forward their aggressive campaign 
in distant colonial fields. The occupation of t he potL uaf 
Kiauchau with 60 kilometers of land around it wa s folloy ed 

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1888. The Anatolian Railway, built from Scutari to Konia (420 miles) by German engineers in 
1875 for the Turkish Government, waa transferred to a German company. 

18»9. A concession waa granted by Abdul Hamid, Sultan of Turkey, to William II, Emperor of 
Germany, "my only friend in Europe," for an extension of the Anatolian Railway across Asiatic 
Turkey to the Persian Gulf. In the same year Great Britain made a treaty with a sheik at the head 
of the Persian Gulf, by virtue of w^hich she laid claim to Koweit. 

1903. Germany made proposals to Great Britain, Russia, and France, for participation in the 
construction of the proposed line. These offers were declined by the three powers, and the con- 
struction was begun by Germany alone. 

1^*- Track was laid to Burgulu. in the Taurus Mountains (125 miles) and tunneling through 
h*^® ro^untains was begun. In October, work was suspended, and waa not again taken up until late 
m 1909. ^ «» K 

1911. Great Britain, who had begun to regret her refusal of Germany's offer of 1903, and who 
had made a number of diplomatic obstructions, agreed to a settlement whereby she would build the 
P'^Posed line through Bassorah to the Persian Gulf. 

1912. Lines were laid eastward from Aleppo to the Euphrates valley, and westward and southward 
irom Moflul. 

1914. Line waa laid an undetermined distance north from Bagdad. Since 19M no official reports 
as to progress have been published. According to newspaper reports the tunnel through the Taurus 
vJ^^^'M has been completed, and all track laid except for a distance of eighty-five miles in the 
>i08ul-Samara section. Below Bagdad, in the Baasoran province, two routes have been proposed, 
out so far construction has not been begun on either of them. It is certain that the road has played 
•Q miportant strategic r61e in the campaigns in Mesopotamia. 

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at once by a demand for extepg iyfi r^i^rnaH, Tn?nt*'ylj and 
financial ^^no^^iy n fi in th^ grvnt ChMii i 'iv iifrvi i i Tf Shan- 
tung. Tlie colonial territories were exploited thoroughly, 
and'German financiers began to seek important concessions 
in Turkish Asia Minor and Mesopotamia, a region practi- 
cally untouched by European enterprise. 

This last move was of the utmost political importance. 
The first indication of German intentions came in 1899, 
when a concession for the construction of a railroad from 
Konia to the Persian Gulf was granted to Germany. Ger- 
man-owned lines had previously been built from the Asia 
Minor coast opposite Constantinople to Angora (1888) 
and from Eski-Shehir (a half-way point between Con- 
stantinople and Angora) to Konia, so that the proposed 
Une, 1700 miles long, would make a solid German-owned 
railroad from Constantinople to Bagdad, passing under 
the Bosphorus by tunnel and throwing out important spur 
lines to Smyrna, to Alexandretta, and to Aleppo, Damascus, 
and Mecca. "The network of German railroads," writes 
Sarolea, "will radiate from Mecca to Constantinople, 
and from Smyrna to the Persian Gulf. One terminus 
will be within twelve hours of Egypt, another terminus 
wiU be within foiu: days of Bombay," Although access 
to the prosperous and productive regions of Asia Minor 
and Mesopotamia with the possibility of a fast overland 
route for the wares of India was a great triumph for Ger- 
man initiative and enterprise, the railroad concessions were 
more important in giving Germany a political foothold in 
Turkey. Asia Minor and Mesopotamia as a German sphere 
of influence were by far the richest prize that had fallen to 
Germany's lot. The exultation of Germans was boisterous. 
They spoke of unser Bagdad^ and of the BBB (the "Berlin, 
Byzantium, Bagdad" line). They looked forward confi- 
dently to the economic and political domination of this 
enormously rich region. Some German writers emphasized 
the strong military advantages such a position would give 

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Germany in the event of a war against Great Britain, for 
she might launch a force against Egypt and the Suez Canal 
with good prospect of success. 

In the ensuing years Germany sedulously developed her 
position in Turkey. German influences penetrated into 
every branch of Turkish government and administration; 
German financial assistance laid Turkey under great obli- 
gations ; German ofiScers reorganized, equipped, and drilled 
the Turkish army. In every way with painstaking care 
Germany consolidated and strengthened her advantageous 
position in Turkey. German interests in that region were, 
it was realized, of greater importance than German interests 
anywhere else in the world. 


Effect of German Activities upon Great Britain 

Great Britain could at the beginning of the new century 
look with equanimity upon the foreign situation. Her 
vast empire stretched around the world; her great self- 
governing colonies were bound to her, not by force, but 
by the ties of patriotic veneration and of self-interest ; her 
merchant marine was the greatest carrier of the world's 
commerce, yielding steady and enormous profits; her 
investments were scattered in every land, making her stock 
exchange the most acciu*ate barometer of the condition of 
the world's business; and her fleet, showing the result of 
Salisbury's naval scheme adopted in 1889, was composed of 
the latest type of warships and was superior in strength 
to those of any two powers. By her policy of non-inter- 
ference in the affairs of Eiu-ope she had, it is true, receded 
from her formerly commanding position in continental 
councils, but in return many of the statesmen felt that by 
keeping aloof she had actually increased the political value 
of her attitude upon international issues. That she had 
followed a policy of "splendid isolation" for a generation 
was no guarantee to the powers of Europe that she would 

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c ofttinue her policy indefinitely, and the strength of her 
huge fleet might turn the scales in any continental dispute. 
She seemed to be able at any time to tip the balance of 
power by her weight one way or another as suited her vital 

In domestic affairs the Irish Question had for a time 
usurped all public interest. Gladstone, aged eighty-two 
years, became prime minister in 1892 for the fourth time 
at the head of a victorious coalition of Liberals and Home 
Rulers. Early in 1893 he introduced the Home Rule bill, 
essentially the same as the one which had spUt his party 
and had been defeated in the parliament seven years before. 
Again the aged prime minister was the center of a bitter 
political fight, but this time he triumphed in the Commons 
by a majority of 34 votes. A week afterwards the bill 
was thrown out by the House of Lords by the crushing vote 
of 419 to 41. A year later, after finding various of his at- 
tempts at reform balked by the opposition of the conserva- 
tive House of Lords, he resigned his portfolio into the hands 
of Lord Rosebery (Liberal). In June, 1895, Lord Rose- 
bery's ministry, defeated in the Commons upon a minor 
issue, resigned. Lord Salisbury, the conservative leader 
in the House of Lords, became prime minister and in the 
ensuing general elections secured an overwhelming conserva- 
tive majority to support his policies. Salisbury remained 
prime minister until December of 1905. It was during this 
decade of his ministry that Great Britain, aroused by the 
increasing menace of German naval armaments, abandoned 
her policy of isolation and entered actively into the arena 
of international diplomacy in Europe to insure her own 

Although British merchants had long felt keenly the 
rivalry of Germany in commerce, it is doubtful whether 
the inroads upon British commerce alone could have aroused 
the intense suspicion of Germany which became noticeable 
shortly after the beginning of the new century. The argu- 

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ments that successful competition in the worlcT s^niatkets 
must be due to betteFmethods^'aricI that therefore British 
merch ants should withhold their complai nts andJ mprov^ 
their methods in order to gain business again st Germ an 
competltTon, are too obvious an answer to any ill-feeling 
excited by German success. When, however, to the Ger man 
success in the world's markets was joined the Germaa 
attempt to create a great navy, British pubHc opinion^ at 
once took alarm. 
\yTo understand the immediate and startling eflfect of Grer- 
many's policy upon British feeling, it is necessary to appre- 
ciate the nature of Great Britain's attitude towards its 
fleet. Great Britain's fleet has been her only powerful 
form of armament. Unlike the continental states. Great 
Britain has not maintained a large standing army recruited 
by one or another variety of compulsory service. Her 
armies, as for example those used in the South African Wars 
and in distant India, have been raised by voluntary enlist- 
ment. Her navy has been, therefore, both her defensive 
and her offensive arm. Furthermore, her geographical 
situation is such that this navy has been more necessary for 
her than any navy for any other power. The population 
of the British Isles has long outgrown the food production 
of the land, so that the people are absolutely dependent 
upon control of the sea lanes to insure them against starva- 
tion. It has been said that, were the sea wholly closed to 
Great Britain for a single week, she would be starved into 
surrender. FVom the British 9.ide» -therefore, the ma 
nance of a navy of overwhelming power has been regarded 
as a logical and inevitable result of the situation and necessi- 
ties of the British Isles. No other country has the same 
situation and necessities; ergo, no other nation has the 
moral right to maintain a navy of a power great enough 
to challenge that of Great Britain. The people, then, at 
the same time that they insisted upon their logicd rights 
to a great navy, have denied — or at least have been ex- 

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tremely suspicious concerning — the right of any other 
nation to have an equally great navy. 
^ Von Tirpitz's remarkable memorandum accompanying 
the German naval bill of 1900 was the fuel that started the 
flame. The statements that *'the German hattU fleet should 
be as strong cw the greatest naval Power, ^' and that "to protect 
Germany^s sea trade and colonies, in the existing circum- 
stances, there is only one means: Germany mvM have a battle 
fleet so strong that even for an adversary with the greatest sea 
power, a war against it would involve such dangers as to im- 
peril his own position in the world,""* pointed, of course, 
directly to Great Britain. The Germans — from their 

side, with reason — lelt that thpir mprphanf TYiRr^nft aTi<J — 

^ their widely separated colonies would alwa ys be held at 
the sufferance of Great Britain, so long as Great Britain was 
in a position t6"Take advaritage^oTany issue to declare war, 
sweep the German commerce from the seas, and isolate 
the mother country from her colonies. The British, on 
their side, laid stress upon the purely defensive nature of 
their armament, and upon their continental diplomacy, and 
-with fast-growing resentment saw ship after ship laid down 
for the new German navy. 

^^-^^^tliifl prifiVfll period came also for the British people 

,^. aj!ealization of the full sig nificance of German activities 

^ in various parts of the world. The world-imperialislTc" 

V^ policy of "the restless arid" progressive "German Einpei'of ' 

'^^y became a feature in the British outlook. Germany's seizure 

of Kiauchau and her concessions in the Shantung province, 

her Samoan islands, her recent African empire, and espe- 

dally her Bagdad railroad, became to the aroused and sus* 

picious British people conclusive evidence of German at- 

tempts to fo und a world empire which should rival and 

perhaps overthrow that of Great Britain. No irian would," 

of course, maintain aloud that Great Britain was the- only 

nation with a right to a policy of world empire, yet there 

was u ndoubtedly a feeling that Great Britain's pre&ninent 

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success in colonial government qualified her especially for 
world empire in contrast to the upstart and inein^erienced 
German state. The- British have laid their a^agonism 
to German plans to other causes, to be sure, but the funda- 
mental causes^iay in the menace of the increasing German 
navy, in the inroads by German merchants upon British 
trade, and in the rivalry of a prospective German world-. 
empire to the already established British world-empire. 

v. Diplomatic Situation in Great Britain and France 
leading up to the Entente Cordiale 

The succession of Edward VII to the throne of England 
introduced a new element into the situation. Queen Vic- 
toria, who ascended the English throne in 1887, died Janu- 
ary 22, 1901. She had been throughout her whole reign 
an ideal constitutional sovereign, yielding her power wholly 
into the hands of her ministers. Her colorless character 
did much to establish firmly the supremacy of parliament 
and of parliamentary ministers in the British system of 
government. Her son, who succeeded to the throne under 
the title of Edward VII, was at the time (1901) a man of 
sixty-one years of age. His mother had jealously and 
short-sightedly prevented him from participating in affairs 
of state. His public activities had been confined to sports, 
as horse-racing and yachting, and to representing his mother 
upon ceremonial occasions. He had traveled widely in 
America, India, and upon the European continent, and was 
especially familiar with and fond of Paris and the French 
people. Though not until recent years allowed access to 
state papers, or any share in the policy of the nation he was 
to rule, he had gained an intimate knowledge of his people 
and of the people on the continent. He was much broader 
in his sympathies and more cosmopolitan than the average 

When Edward VII accepted the pledges of loyalty from 

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the leaders of his government, he announced that he intended 
to follow the poUey of the late Queen and to govern as a 
constitutional monarch; but events soon showed that he 
was not of a character that could entirely obliterate itself 
before its agents. Edward VII saw opportunities to be of 
real service to the state even while continuing as a con- 
stitutional monarch under the advice of his ministers. 
As soon as the Boer war ended — and he is credited with 
having had much to do with its speedy decision and with 
the very liberal terms of peace granted — Edward VII 
turned his attention to the possibilities of using his personal 
influence to strengthen Great Britain's position abroad. 
The German menace was monthly becoming more alarming. 
It was essential that Great Britain take immediate steps 
to fortify herself. Across the channel was one nation which 
had felt the hand of Germany in the past and still smarted 
under the humiliation of that defeat. It was to France, 
then, that Edward VII turned for aid in the .threatening 
foreign situation. 

1. Internal Conditions in Prance 

In France the bitter factions into which politicians had 
divided during the heat of the Dreyfus case had resulted, 
in 1900, in the formation of a powerful coalition, known as 
the "Bloc," in the Chamber of Deputies. The "Bloc" 
was composed of Liberals holding to various shades of 
Socialist and Radical Republican principles. It had gained 
control of the government, and its leader, Waldeck-Rousseau, 
had become prime minister. From that time until the 
present, the "Bloc" has retained control of the govern- 

Waldeck-Rousseau sounded the key-note of the "Bloc's" 
policy in a political speech at Toulouse (October, 1900). 
The Dreyfus trial had revealed to discerning statesmen 
that the Catholic Church in France had been the secret and 
5K)werful ally of the military party and of the anti-Drey- 

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fusites. Looking back still furtlier, these statesmen recog- 
nized that the CathoUc Church had been the insidious enemy 
of the republic since its establishment. For a generation, 
since 1871, the Catholic Church had thrown all its enormous 
influence against popular government. Realizing these 
conditions, Waldeck-Rousseau opened his political fight 
against the most potent agencies of the CathoUc cause, the 
reUgious orders or "congregations." He pointed out the 
enormous' increase in membership, wealth, and activity 
of these congregations. The number of nuns had increased 
60,000 between 1877 and 1900; the number of monks in 
1900 in France was 200,000 ; the value of the property held 
by the orders had grown from $10,000,000 in 1860 to $140,- 
000,000 in 1880 and to $200,000,000 in 1900; the teaching 
and preaching activities had widened with the increase of 
the orders in numbers and wealth. 

In July of 1901 Waldeck-Rousseau introduced his Law 
of Associations, intended to be a preliminary step toward 
checking the Catholic influences in the state. This law 
provided that all "congregations" must have definite author- 
ity for existence or formation from the state ; and that no 
teaching could be carried on except by "congregations" 
which had been duly authorized. The Catholics fought 
this law bitterly. In the elections of 1902 the two partlibs 
struggled to gain the advantage. The "Bloc" was returned 
with a comfortable majority. Combes, who succeeded 
Waldeck-Rousseau as prime minister after the elections, 
applied the law vigorously throughout the next two years. 
In 1904 the "Bloc" increased the severity of the govern- 
ment's attitude toward the church by the passage of a law 
providing that all teaching by religious orders, authorized 
or unauthorized, should cease within ten years. Other 
events intensified the bitter feeUng between the govern- 
ment and the church. For example, in April of 1904 the 
President of France, M. Loubet, paid an official visit to the 
King of Italy to celebrate the reconciliation between France 

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and Italy ; the Pope protested vigorously to France and to 
the other Catholic powers against French recognition of 
the "usurper" King of Italy; the French people flamed 
with indignation at what they regarded as an unwarranted 
interference with their national affairs. 

Impelled by the continued opposition of the authorities 
of the church, and supported by the opinion of the mass of 
the French people, the government finally took the decisive 
step of introducing and passing a bill providing for the 
complete separation of church and state. The relations 
between the two institutions had, it will be remembered, 
existed for a century under the provisions of Napoleon's 
Concordat of 1801, in accordance with which the state 
and the Papacy cooperated in religious affairs in the following 
way : (a) the state appointed archbishops and bishops with 
the consent of the Pope; (6) the bishop appointed the 
priests with the consent of the state; (c) The state paid 
the salaries of the clergy, both lower and higher; (d) the 
state, which had since 1789 held possession of aU ecclesi- 
astical property, such as churches, parish houses, semina- 
ries, etc., retained ownership, but placed this property at 
the disposal of the church authorities. The law providing 
for the separation of church and state was, of course, first 
of all an abrogation of the Concordat. In general its^ further 
significant provisions were as follows: (a) the republic 
ceased to pay the salaries of the clergy, and likewise ceased 
to have any control over ecclesiastical appointments; (6) 
the republic was willing to establish a system of pensions 
for the existing priests who had been appointed under the 
Concordat; (c) the government, refusing to recognize the 
superior rights of any religion, proposed to give the use of 
its ecclesiastical property to new bodies, formed for the 
purpose by commxmicants in each district and known as 
associations cultueUes (Associations of Worship). The law 
was passed December 9, 1905. 

The Pope unqualifiedly condemned this law. Succeed- 

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ing elections proved that the French people. Catholic though 
the mass of them were in religion, supported the action of 
their government. The opposition of the Pope resulted in a 
new law passed by the French government January 2, 1907, 
taking away what privileges had been granted to the church 
by the law of 1905 and providing that the use of ecclesiasti- 
cal property should be regulated by regular contracts be- 
tween the priests and the local civil authorities. This 
law of 1907 permitted the churches to remain open — a 
most important point — and thus assured to the masses 
of the French people the opportunity to attend religious 
service. Inasmuch as the Pope never specifically forbade 
his priests to make these contracts, this system gradually 
became accepted as a modus operandi. The resulting situa- 
tion is peculiar : church and state are definitely separated ; 
the Pope has never approved the separation, still maintain- 
ing that the French government had no right to annul the 
Concordat; actual religious services continue to be held 
in the churches, possession of which is granted by regular 
civil contract between the individual priests and the local 

%. Foreign Policy of Prance 

While this struggle in domestic politics had been going 
on, the foreign policy of the government took a new turn. 
Gabriel Hanotaux had been minister of foreign affairs in 
France from 1894 until 1898, practically continuously- He 
had forwarded French colonial expansion, especially in 
Africa, and had tended to accept in good faith the concilia- 
tory approaches of the German Emperor. He was openly 
and outspokenly suspicious of and hostile to Great Britain. 
In the change of ministry in June of 1898, Hanotaux was 
replaced by Th6ophile Delcass6. With Delcass6*s advent 
to the foreign oflSce, the spirit of French policy changed 
radically. Delcass6 proceeded to direct the foreign oflSce 
with a view to securing France's international position 

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against any menace from without, especially <rom Germany. 
To accomplish this result, he needed friends in Europe. 
Confronted almost immediately with the Fashoda issue, 
be settled this in 1899 by a colonial agreement with Great 
Britain delimiting the respective spheres of Great Britain 
and France in northern Africa. He attempted to consolidate 
the relations between Russia and France by personal visits 
to St. Petersburg in 1899 and 1901. He made it a cardinal 
point of his policy to allay the hostility that had so long 
existed between France and Italy as a result of the French 
protectorate over Tunis and the French championship of 
the cause of the Pope when the Italians seized Rome. By 
notes and verbal assurances during the years 1900, .1901, 
and 1902 he contrived to reach a satisfactory understanding 
with the Italian government, the main features of which 
were : (a) that Italy would regard her engagements of the 
Triple Alliance as purely defensive in nature and would 
in no case become either the instrument or the auxiliary of 
aggressive measures against France ; (6) that France would 
allow Italy free hand in furthering Italian interests through- 
out Tripoli ; and (c) that Italy would take no steps to pre- 
vent the accomplishment of French policy in Morocco. 
This Franco-Italian understanding was a special diplomatic 
triumph for France because, in the first place, it secured 
France's safety in the western Mediterranean ; in the second 
place, it removed one possible objector to the development 
of French influence in Morocco ; and in the third place — 
perhaps most important — it distinctly weakened one 
important link in the chain of the Triple Alliance forged 
by Bismarck to curb France. 

Having settled the Fashoda issue, strengthened the 
friendly relations between France and Russia, and estab- 
lished ties of amity and interest with Italy, Delcass6 was still 
anxious to secure France's position on the continent by 
further international understandings. It is no evidence 
of a purposeful anti-German policy that Delcass6 believed 

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that France had to direct her foreign relations to meet the 
situation created by the Triple Alliance. It was an open 
secret that one object of that alliance was to isolate France 
in Europe: it was the duty of a French foreign minist« 
to do everything possible to rescue France from such in- 
tended isolation. Much had been done by putting a new 
vitality into the relations with Russia and by removing some 
of the hostility of Italy : success would be complete if Great 
Britain could be induced to enter continental politics on 
the side of France. Hence, Delcass6 was willing to hold 
the door open to the British advances. 

It is hard for us now to realize the enormous difficulties 
in the way of such friendship. Not only were there cen- 
turies of opposition, jealousy, and suspicion between the 
two states, but within a half dozen years their peoples had 
been inflamed to the point of war against each other. Only 
the peculiar crisis in continental affairs for France and in 
naval and world-empire policies for Great Britain made it 
possible to surmount the difficulties. The two countries 
were drawn into an understanding by their common fear 
and suspicion of Germany, not by any natural instincts ol 

vi. The Formation of the Entente Cordiale 

Edward VII of Great Britain took the initiative in an at- 
tempt to draw the two countries closer together. Although 
as Prince of Wales he had been a well-known and well-liked 
figure in France, it took no little audacity and courage to 
make an official visit to that country in the character of 
King. In 1903 Edward VII made the visit to President 
Loubet of France. Among a small part of the people the 
passions engendered by the Fashoda crisis revived, but the 
crowds as a whole, at first merely respectful, soon showed 
noticeable courtesy and sympathy for the familiar figure 
of the King. Two months later President Loubet returned 
the visit in London. The basis for peaceful "conversa- 

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tions" was thus established. For eight months negotia- 
tions proceeded and finally, April 8, 1904, a definite agree- 
ment, commonly called the Entente Cordialey was signed. 

This agreement settled permanently all past and out- 
standing issues that existed between France and Great 
Britain due to their conflicting colonial claims. France 
on her part recognized British special interests in Egypt 
and agreed not to embarrass the British government by 
demanding that a definite date be set for the evacuation 
of that country ; Great Britain on her part granted France 
a free hand in developing her policy in Morocco ; and both 
parties promised to support each other diplomatically for 
the execution of the agreement. Great Britain was thus 
given a free hand in Egypt, and France in Morocco. 

The Entente Cordiale, be it noted, was entirely different 
in kind from the Dual Alliance or the Triple Alliance. 
Whereas the Alliances were of the nature of defensive mili- 
tary conventions between the contracting powers, the 
Entente Cordiale was merely an understanding between 
two powers on certain issues which had long been a source 
of conflict. The Entente Cordiale did not provide for mili- 
tary measures, either of defense or of offense, and by its 
very nature was not specifically directed againt any country, 
countries, or coalition. It did have, however, a wider 
importance than that afforded by the mere settlement of 
territorial claims. It marked the end of Gre at Bri tain's 
policy of is olation and the b eginning o t a period of .agtiye 
participation mEuropeanp olitics ; it freed France from her 
subservience to Germany and gave her the courage to as- 
sume the initiative in Europe and to maintain such initia- 
tive even in the face of German opposition. It insured 
Great Britain against trouble with France during a possible 
Anglo-German conflict; and conversely, it insured France 
against trouble with Great Britain during a possible Franco- 
German conflict. 

From the German side, the sudden change in the polit- 

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ical field was regarded with great alarm. It was the first 
definite setback which German diplomacy had received 
since the establishment of the empire in 1871. William 
n*s policy, so successful up to 1900, had suddenly been 
checked by the entrance of a new and imexpected factor. 
Great Britain, in the continental situation. To German 
diplomats. Ententes were the preliminaries to Alliances, 
and they regarded the Dual Entente (Russia and France) 
and the Entente Cordiale (Great Britain and France) as the 
first steps in the formation of a hostile coalition which 
would threaten and perhaps overthrow the coveted German 
leadership on the continent. German foreign statesman- 
ship, which had been passive and acquiescent so long as 
affairs went as it desired, now suddenly became trans- 
formed. Germany became aggressive and militant after 
the formation of the Entente Cordiale, suspicious of every 
move upon the European board. 

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To understand European development during the period 
we have now reached, we must consider the colonial enter- 
prises entered upon by the individual European nations 
at the close of the nineteenth and the opening of the twen- 
tieth century. The history of Europe in recent years often 
has hinged upon such remote points as a railroad in Asia 
Minor, or a protectorate in northern Africa, or a harbor in 
Korea. The improvement in modern methods of produc- 
tion, transportation, and communication has bound all the 
world closer together and has resulted in such an expansion 
of interests that the history of one small section of the world 
is intimately involved with that of all other sections. Enter- 
prises in diflferent colonial fields have been responsible for 
most of the crises in European politics since 1900. 


During the last years of the nineteenth century all Europe 
participated in an industrial "boom." Although there 
were single years, of course, when the march of prosperity 
halted, figures taken at very brief intervals show a con- 
tinuous increase of economic activities. All the great 
states enjoyed peace. The development of the means of 
production, transportation, and communication, which 
had in recent years been enormously improved over the 
facilities of past centuries, proceeded at an accelerated 


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pace. The production of coal which had become a most 
essential element in the driving of modern engines, increased 
by huge amounts ; the mining of iron, which was wrought 
by modern, methods of manufacture in new forms and huge 
quantities, was carried out on an unprecedented scale; 
railroad tracks and equipment were extended ; steamship lines 
were led to supply themselves with more and more modern 
vessels to cope with the growing demand for transportation. 
The figures of export and import business showed annual 
increases running into the hundreds of millions of dollars. 

By the selection of a few statistics on these fundamental 
activities in the three most prosperous states in Europe, 
Great Britain, Prance, and Germany, we can indicate how re- 
markable these increases were. The annual production of 
coal increased in these three countries by 155,000,000 tons in 
the fifteen years from 1885 to 1900 ; the quantity of iron 
mined annually in the same period increased by 9,000,000 
tons ; the length of the railroads by 15,000 miles and their 
financial receipts by 600,000,000 of dollars ; the tonnage of 
merchant vessels by 6,200,000 tons ; and the gross imports 
and exports by the stupendous sum of 2,600,000,000 of 
dollars. No previous period of the same length had been 
characterized by any such expansion of economic interests. 
For example, if we consider the period adjacent to that from 
1885 to 1900, the statistics from 1870 to 1885 show the fol- 
lowing increases: annual coal production, 68,000,000 tons; 
annual iron mining, 4,500,000 tons; railway construction, 
13,000 miles, and railway receipts 250,000,000 of dollars; 
gross imports and exports, 675,000,000.* Prom the com- 
parison of the figures given with the two periods of similar 
length it can be seen that the general increase along the 
economic lines indicated was more than twice as great dur- 
ing the fifteen years from 1885 to 1900 as it was during the 
fifteen years just previous. 

Among the most important of the political effects of this 

1 These figures are approximate. They are based on the statistics collected by 
the National Monetary Commission. U. S. Senate Document f 578. 1910. 

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prosperity was the impetus given to colonization. The 
great states which profited most through economic activi- 
ties were inspired thereby to reach out and acquire all the 
unclaimed territory they could discover. The states of 
Europe participated during these fifteen years in an undig- 
nified scramble for colonies, during which bitter antagonisms 
were at times excited. 

The causes which connected the material prosperity of 
these countries with their desire for colonial expansion 
were chiefly three in number. In the first place, each state 
sought new and profitable markets. The modern methods 
of manufacture enabled a country to produce more than it \ 
could use within its own boundaries and among its own 
people. Its prosperity could be increased largely if it could 
control a definite market for its surplus products. Each 
one* therefore, saw in its colonies a present and future pos- 
aibiUty for the marketing of its manufactured products. In 
the second place, the modem method of manufacture 
demanded more raw material than could be procured within 
the boundaries of any one state. In some cases, too, raw 
material of a kind not to be found within the state was 
largely used in its factories. Hence, European states sought 
colonies which were rich in natural resources, to be de- 
veloped for the manufacturing needs of the - mother state. 
And in the third place, certain of the great states sought 
in colonies an outlet for their smplus population. In those 
countries where the population outgrew the economic op- 
portunities, the people naturally emigrated where they 
might live with material comfort. Thus Germany, whose 
population increased by leaps and bounds after 1870, saw 
her overflow emigrating to the United States or to South 
American countries where they fell under the allegiance of 
alien governments. The strong argument for the acquisi- 
tion of colonies lay in the fact that a surplus population might 
be encouraged to settle in such colonies and remain under 
the allegiance of their home state. 

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i. Africa 

At this period when the definite movement for colonial 
expansion began, one continent at the very doors of Emt>pe 
was in great part unclaimed. Africa was commonly called 
the Dark Continent, not only because of its dark races, 
but because of the dense ignorance of most Europeans 
concerning its geography and resources. Although Egypt 
had been the seat of an ancient civilization and Africa 
north of the vast Sahara desert had formed part of the 
Roman Empire, and although during the fifteenth and six- 
teenth centuries intrepid Portuguese and English navigators 
sailed along the African coasts trading with the savage 
tribes, no serious attempts at colonization in Africa had 
been made previous to the nineteenth century. The 
African continent seemed to oflfer no advantages: it had 
few good harbors; it was drained by few large navigable 
rivers; its coastal regions were commonly low and (for 
Europeans) plague-ridden; its inhabitants were black 
savages, seized and exported by thousands annually in the 
seventeenth and eighteenth centuries to be sold as slaves. 
At the beginning of the nineteenth century, after the slave 
trade was suppressed, interest in Africa died down, for the 
trade in ivory, gold, and gums had been inconsiderable 
beside that in slaves. At this time (1815), France had a 
slender foothold on the coast near the Senegal river ; Portu- 
gal was established in lower Guinea on the west coast and 
in a district opposite to the island of Madagascar on the east 
coast, and laid claim to extensive unknown hinterlands ; and 
Great Britain had taken Cape Colony, at the extreme tip of 
the continent, from the Dutch during the Napoleonic wars 
and was holding it as a valuable halfway station on the 
route to India. All of central Africa was unexplored and, 
except for Portugal's vague and unrecognized rights, un- 

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claimed. Pictures of the hippopotamus, the elephant, or 
the black man decorated the early maps to conceal the 
ignorance of the geographers. 

In the third quarter of the nineteenth century a renewed 
interest in Africa was excited by the accounts of a group of 
explorers. Livingstone and Stanley in Central Africa, 
Rohlfs, Schweinfurth, and Nachtigal in Southern Morocco, 
Sahara, and the Soudan, and Du Chaillu in West Africa 
published books which stimulated the imagination and 
awakened the avarice of Europeans. The interior of Africa 
was revealed, not as a barren desert or as an impenetrable 
forest, but as a plateau watered by great and navigable 
rivers and lakes and rich in natiu'al resources. By the 
year 1875, after the results of the chief explorers had been 
made known, the chances for profitable colonial acquisi- 
tions in Africa had begun to interest European governments. 
Between that date and the end of the century, so rapidly 
did those governments act that all of Africa was accurately 
mapped into colonies, protectorates, or spheres of influence 
of European states. 

ii. Asia 

Halfway around the world lay another continent which 
offered to the land-hungering states opportunities to acquire 
colonies. Asia, however, presented a problem entirely 
different from that of Africa. Asia had been the original 
cradle of civilization. Certain of its people had been 
highly civilized when the Europeans were barbarians. 
They possessed an immensely rich and well-cultivated coun- 
try. They were industrious, peaceful, and contented. 
They had for centuries willfully isolated themselves from 
the rest of the world, supremely confident of the value and 
perfection of their own civilization. In their isolation, 
barred from a knowledge of the progress of the restless 
enterprising nations in the western world, they had stag- 
nated. They lost the ability to progress. Their civiliza- 

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tion revolved in the same circle for generation after genera- 
tion. They revered the past instead of aspiring for the 

In relatively modern times the European trader in his 
search for new markets and for new sources of wealth was 
attracted to the East. He sought to break through the 
barriers raised by the Eastern people. By force and in- 
trigue he established trading stations, protectorates, de- 
pendencies, and spheres of influence. Throughout the 
densely populated regions of southern Asia, Portuguese, 
Dutch, French, and English struggled during the sixteenth 
and seventeenth centuries for a monopoly of the immensely 
rich trade with these regions. During the eighteenth cen- 
tury this struggle evolved itself into a duel between France 
and Great Britain for supremacy in India. This duel France 
lost. At the beginning of the nineteenth century Great 
Britain was firmly established in the rich province of Bengal, 
and in the district around Madras, in a position to extend 
her acquisitions still further as opportunity oflFered. To the 
east of India the Dutch had during this period strengthened 
their hold in the islands adjoining the Malay Archipelago. 
After the disastrous period of the Napoleonic wars they 
retained Java, Sumatra, Celebes, the Molucca (or Spice) 
islands, and portions of Borneo, comprising altogether an 
area of more than 700,000 square miles with a native 
population of approximately 30,000,000. In northern Asia, 
Russia had crept gradually to the sea over the barren plains 
of Siberia. Oflf the southeast coast, Spain held the Philip- 
pine islands. 

During the first three-quarters of the nineteenth century 
the Asiatic colonial movements in which we are most in- 
terested were those which affected China and Japan. These 
two empires were typical of the isolation i>olicies of the 
East. China, firm in her belief in her own superiority, 
held no intercourse with foreign nations. She had no 
ambassadors at the European courts: she desired no 

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ambassadors from those courts to her own. Her empire 
was three times the size of England, France, and Germany 
combined; the population (although accurate figures are 
not obtainable) was over 200,000,000; her land produced 
everything needed for her people. China rejected foreign 
trade as imnecessary and undesirable. The Japanese 
Empire consisted of an archipelago off the east coast of 
Asia, consisting of four large islands and some thousands 
of small ones. The country was mountainous, much of 
it volcanic in origin, and ill suited for agriculture. The 
government was feudal in character. The Emperor was 
nominally the supreme sovereign ; the Shogun, as personal 
representative of the Emperor, had control of the executive, 
legislative, and administrative powers. In the sixteenth 
and seventeenth centiu'ies a few missionaries and traders 
had reached Japan, but their innovations had been so 
seriously resented that in 1638 the Shogun adopted a policy 
of complete isolation. The foreigners were expelled and 
Japan hermetically sealed from the outside world. Thus 
she remained for two centuries. 

The opening of China and Japan to western influences 
came at about the same time, but had markedly different 
results. China had allowed European trade in one port. 
Canton, under severe irritating restrictions. Through 
this port the English traders imported enormous quantities 
of opium. The Chinese government, realizing the baneful 
effects of the drug upon its people, forbade its importation 
and in 1837 took active measures to stop the trafl5c. Their 
agent destroyed enormous quantities of opium in Canton 
by force and expelled many of the British merchants who 
had been employed in the business. Great Britain's interest 
in maintaining the sale of opium, which was grown in India, 
led her to take active hostile measures against China. Her 
fleet fired upon the Chinese fleet, blockaded Canton, and 
seized the ports of Amoy, Ningpo, Shanghai, and Nanking. 
In 1842 the Chinese government sued for peace. By the 

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Treaty of Nanking, China agreed tx) pay a heavy indemnity, 
to recognize the official status of British representatives, 
to cede Hongkong (an island at the mouth of the Canton 
river) and to open to commerce the ports of Amoy, Foochow, 
Ningpo, and Shanghai. Other nations now hastened to 
take advantage of the increased facilities for commerce. 
France, Belgium, Prussia, the Netherlands, Portugal, and 
the United States shared in the conmiercial opportunity. 
Within a few years, however, the hostility of the Chinese 
government and people gave rise to fresh dissatisfaction 
among the Europeans. Great Britain, France, Russia, and 
the United States jointly requested that a Chinese minister 
be appointed to negotiate a settlement of the questions at 
issue. Upon the refusal of the Chinese government, French 
and British gunboats demoUshed the forts protecting 
Tientsin and, in 1858, took that city. Not until two 
years later were the difficulties adjusted. In 1860 the Chi- 
nese Emperor agreed to pay another indenmity, to receive 
a British ambassador and British consuls at the open ports, 
and to open Tientsin to foreign conmierce. Chinese hostil- 
ity, inspired from the government, did not wane, however, 
during the following years. A few more ports were opened 
to commerce, but China continued to resent the presence 
of the "foreign devils" in its boundaries. The government 
made no attempt to adapt itself to the new conditions or 
to alter its course of civilization. 

The opening of Japan to communication with the outside 
world came at this same period. On behalf of the United 
States government Commodore Perry in 1858 landed in 
Japan and demanded that the barbarous and piratical 
treatment of Americans shipwrecked on Japanese coasts 
be stopped, and that two ports be opened to American 
ships for coaling and refitting in case of necessity. Being 
received by the Shogun, Perry presented these demands to 
him under the impression that he was the sovereign. Perry 
accompanied his statement with the threat of war in the 

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event of ref usaL The Shogun agreed to the more immediate 
demands, but asked time to consider the quesrtion of open- 
ing relations with a foreign state. Perry thereupon sailed 
away, promising to return a year later. In 1854, upon his 
return, he negotiated a treaty with the Shogun by which 
two ports were opened to American ships. 

In itself, the opening up of relations with the outside 
world seems of little importance, but this event precipitated 
a civil war in Japan. The Mikado had not been consulted 
by the Shogun on this policy. He and his supporters, with 
certain of the ancient nobility of Japan, opposed the Shogun 
and encouraged anti-foreign sentiment. The Shogun, how- 
ever, impressed with the necessity of admitting foreigners 
in order to learn the secrets of their guns and ships, con- 
tinued to open ports to foreign states. Thus Hakodate, 
Yokohama, Nagasaki, and Kobe were during the next 
few years opened to commerce. Popular sentiment, en- 
couraged by the Mikado's opposition, broke out in riots 
in which, in 1862, an Englishman by the name of Richard- 
son was killed. Great Britain took immediate action. Her 
warships bombarded Kagoshima, one of the most conserva- 
tive strongholds, and in the year 1864 bombarded Shimon- 

The eflFect produced by British guns was miraculous. 
The conservative circles veered around immediately to the 
policy of the Shogun. They realized, as had the Shogun, 
that in order to secure their own safety thay must place 
themselves on an equal footing in a military way with the 
western powers. They must learn the secrets of the for- 
eigners. They had before them the example of China, who 
by continued hostility to the "foreign devils*' and to the 
introduction of foreign methods had proved an easy prey 
and had lost by force valuable ports and territory. A dis- 
tinct change in policy was made more easy by the deaths 
of the Shogun (1866) and the Mikado (1867) within a year 
of each otiier. The new Mikado, Mutsuhito, ascending 

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the throne in 1867, emerged from the retirement in which 
Mikados had been accustomed to live, selected Yedo (re- 
named Tokyo) as his capital, forced the new Shogun to 
resign his ofl5ce, and prepared to inaugurate an "enlightened 
rule." The power of the Shogun was broken in a short 
but severe civil war. The feudal princes patriotically sur- 
rendered their traditional powers into the hands of the 
Mikado. Serfdom was abolished. With his absolute and 
autocratic powers the Mikado undertook to revolutionize 
Japanese institutions. 

Japanese progress since 1870 has been the marvel of the 
world. Japanese students penetrated to all parts of the 
western world, scrutinizing and studying the industrial 
and commercial methods and the political institutions in 
the foremost countries. In 1872 an army was organized 
after German methods and European officers were imported 
to train it. The foundations of a modem navy were 
laid and dockyards and arsenals built for its repair and 
equipment. A university of modern type was founded at 
Tokyo, foreign professors invited to teach, and the general 
educational system throughout the country reorganized. 
A telegraph and postal system was introduced, railway 
construction begun and speedily developed, and large 
manufactories built, equipped, and put into operation. 
Huge industrial towns sprang up. Newspapers and books 
multiplied rapidly. The legal codes, both civil and crim- 
inal, were thoroughly revised in accordance with the best 
European models. And when, partly as a result of the 
notable progress along material lines, the people were in- 
spired to petition the Mikado for a constitution, that liberal- 
minded monarch sent a commission abroad to make an 
exhaustive study of foreign constitutions and their opera- 
tion, and in 1889 published the document, drawn up in ac- 
cordance with the reports of his commission and showing 
clearly the influences of the United States, Germany, and 
Great Britain. In 1890 the first Japanese parliament met. 

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The transformation of Japan profoundly altered the 
political situation in the Far East. Japan, by virtue of 
her modern institutions and, it must be confessed, especially 
by virtue of her army and navy, took her place as an equal 
in the family of nations. Not only was it no longer con- 
ceivable that she should be a prey to the colonizing rapacity 
of European states, but she herself quickly developed colo- 
nial ambitions of her own. Her large population, some 
35,000,000, was crowded into a series of narrow islands, 
only one-sixth of whose soil was fit for cultivation. Her 
factories began to tiun out manufactured products faster 
than her people could use them. The demand for raw ma- 
terial rapidly increased. Thus the same motives which 
actuated European states, desire for colonies as a market 
for products, as a dwelling place for surplus population, 
and as a source of raw material for her factories, actuated 
Japan. She became a competitor in the race, with the ad- 
vantage of proximity to the Asiatic field. 


In the rivalry among the European states for colonial 
acquisition in Africa and Asia, Great Britain at the begin- 
ning had a decided advantage. She had the prestige of 
having already established the greatest colonial empire 
the world had ever known. Her colonial governmental 
system was adaptable and operated with efficiency and 
little apparent friction. Her navy, more than twice as 
powerful as that of any other state, insured the safety of 
her commerce and communications. Her national income, 
already greater than that of any of her rivals, was increasing 
yearly by huge amounts. Her surplus population, emi- 
grating to her colonies, built up in distant lands strong 
communities of English speech and sentiment. In contrast 

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to the British colonial status at the beginning of this period, 
France had but a single large colony, Algeria. The immense 
empire over the seas which she had once possessed had 
been almost entirely lost. Germany entering late into a 
national unified life, had acquired no colonies. In Ger- 
many, Bismarck had been so completely devoted to the 
creation of a united Germany and the fostering of a national 
spirit and prosperity that he had up to this period vigorously 
opposed colonial expansion. In Italy, although the internal 
difficulties, especially the financial situation, kept the govern- 
ment from embarking on a costly and possibly hazardous 
colonial policy, her statesmen cast covetous eyes upon the 
north shore of Africa. Russia had expanded, not by sea 
as had Great Britain, but by progressive encroachments 
to the east until she had reached the Pacific. 

Such, in brief outline, were the general conditions in the 
colonial situation at the beginning of 1880. Africa and 
Asia were considered as legitimate prizes of colonial con- 
quest. Great Britain, France, Germany, and Japan were 
impelled by recent economic developments to seek colonies. 
Russia had ever been a land-hungering nation, seeking 
especially in these modem times a port in a warm climate. 
Italy coveted the north shore of Africa as a means of pro- 
tection to herself and of economic opportunity to her people. 
Russia and Japan confined their colonial ambitions to the 
continent of Asia; Italy to Africa: the remainder of the 
states were willing to forward colonial enterprise in either 


i. Before 1890 

The awakened interest in the possibilities of colonization 
in Africa was signalized by a conference, held at the invita- 
tion of King Leopold of Belgium, in Brussels, 1876. The 
avowed purpose of the conference was the foundation of 

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an international society to promote exploration in Africa. 
This association was not only for scientific, but for phil- 
anthropic purposes, since its leaders laid great emphasis 
upon the part it might play in eradicating the known evils 
of slave-trade in the interior of Africa. Noted scientists 
and diplomats from Great Britain, France, Germany, Italy, 
and Russia attended. With marked enthusiasm, they 
organized "L' Association Internationale pour TExploration 
de la Civilization de TAfrique Centrale" (commonly called 
the "International African Association")- I'he headquar- 
ters of the society were at Brussels : national committees 
in various states were appointed to forward the cause and to 
solicit funds. 

In 1879 the association secured the services of Stanley, 
who had just returned the preceding year from a most suc- 
cessful trip in Central Africa. His mission for the associa- 
tion was to explore and map the great Congo River, to enter 
into treaty relations with native chiefs, and to use every 
effort to stop the slave trade in interior Africa. He left 
Europe in August of 1870 and returned five years later 
(June, 1884), having mapped out an enormous region of 
900,000 square miles in the Congo basin, containing 15,- 
000,000 people. 

Even before Stanley returned, however, the international 
and philanthropic character of the association had been 
lost. The dearth of contributions from other sources 
forced King Leopold to assume the whole financial burden 
himself. These expenses averaged about $150,000 a year. 
To recoup himself for these sums, Leopold began to develop 
the commercial possibilities of such parts of the Congo 
basin as were already known. Therefore, in 1882, the 
International African Association was transformed into the 
International Association of the Congo; Leopold became 
president; a distinct flag was adopted; and systematic 
trade development started. 

The alteration of nature and purpose radically changed 

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the status of Stanley's mission and of the association. 
Whereas the original African association had received the 
recognition of Europe by virtue of its international and 
philanthropic character, the Association of the Congo, 
which had nothing more than the character of a coloniza- 
tion scheme for commercial advantages, had no such recog- 
nition. Portugal had a vague claim upon much of the 
Congo territory, French explorations had reached parts of 
this region, and German traders had established many 
posts along the west coast with which a lively and profitable 
commerce had sprung up. The possibilities of serious con- 
sequences resulting from conflicting claims and injured 
trade interests led to the first great European Congress on 
colonial affairs. 

This congress met at Berlin, November 15, 1884, with 
Bismarck as president. Its purpose, as was stated in the 
invitation, was to discuss "Freedom of commerce in the 
basin and mouths of the Congo; . . . and a definition of 
formalities to be observed so that new occupations on the 
African coasts shall be deemed effective." Representatives 
from all the European countries and from the United States 
were present. The last session was held February 26, 1885, 
at which the diplomats present signed the " General Act of 
the West African Conference." 

This general act, in addition to recognizing the associa- 
tion of the Congo with its vast domain in Africa and pro- 
viding for complete freedom of commerce within that area, 
set forth the general rules for the extension of colonial pos- 
sessions in Africa. Under these rules, all the powers must 
be notified by any power contemplating the establishment 
of a new protectorate; actual possession with the main- 
tenance of law and order therein was the only recognized 
title to colonial territory ; and arbitration in case of con- 
flicting claims was compulsory. 

The importance of this conference lay in the fact that it 
constituted a sincere attempt of the states in joint meeting 

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to keep the ambitions of colonial powers in Africa within 
reasonable bounds. Its provisions, agreed to and made 
public at the very beginning of the most active period in 
colonial expansion, established certain fundamental prin- 
ciples, by adherence to which dangerous crises might be 
avoided. And it set a precedent for future conferences 
on similar subjects : — it was, indeed, l)ut the first of a 
series of joint conferences or mutual agreements between 
two or more states by which colonial issues were amicably 

With the way thus cleared, the acquisition of territory 
in Africa proceeded at an accelerated pace. In Germany 
a Colonial Society had been founded in 1882. By its 
lectures, propaganda, and later by its colonial museum at 
Berlin, it aroused popular interest in the possibilities of 
German colonial expansion. Bismarck, who had up to 
this period devoted his entire energies to the development 
of united Germany, was at last converted. By 1883 Ger- 
man traders established more than sixty stations along the 
west coast of Africa and were clamoring for the protection 
of the German flag. One man in particular, Herr Liideritz 
from Bremen, had acquired by treaties with the natives a 
patch of land around the Angra Pequefla, on the west coast, 
north of the Cape Colony settlement. For this land he 
demanded German protection. In 1884 Bismarck granted 
his request and for the first time authorized the raising of 
the German flag over colonial property in Africa. By 
huge extensions in the same year and in the two years fol- 
lowing, this tiny colony was expanded into the enormous 
district known as German Southwest Africa. The step 
once taken, further acquisitions immediately followed. In 
1884 by treaties with native chiefs obtained largely through 
the efforts of the explorer Nachtigal, Germany acquired a 
foothold in Togoland and the Cameroons, Togoland being 
on the coast just south of the Sahara desert, and the Cam- 
eroons bordering on the Gulf of Guinea. In 1885 Grerman 

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representatives were busy on the east coast, making treaties 
with the local chieftains covering an enormous tract of land. 

! A protectorate known as German East Africa was officially 
proclaimed which, by subsequent agreement with Great 
Britain, who had interests to the north, included roughly 
200,000 square miles of territory. Nor did Germany during 
these years confine herself to Africa. Once the colonial 
policy was adopted, the country followed it with energy and 
persistence. While the German traders and explorers were 
busy in Africa, their brothers in the western hemisphere 
were inspired with the same ambitions. No foothold on 
the continent of Asia was at the time possible without pro- 

I voking a serious crisis either with France or Great Britain, 
but a number of scattered island territories lay unclaimed 
and apparently undesired. Germany hastened to raise her 

;flag over these, adding the Bismarck Archipelago, German 

• New Guinea, and the Marshall Islands to her colonies in 
1884 and 1885, and the Solomon Islands in 1886. Thus 
Germany, starting in 1884 with no colonies, had built up 
before 1890 an empire of 750,000 square miles in Africa, 
and had secured a number of more or less important foot- 
holds in the Pacific. 

France had a decided handicap over Germany in the fact 
that she had retained from previous years some settlements 
in Africa and Asia. Thus Algeria, Senegal, the Ivory Coast, 
Guinea, and Gabun in northern and western Africa, and 
Cochin-China and Cambodia in southeastern Asia might 
each prove a center from which French territory could be 
extended. Under the daring leadership of Jules Ferry, 
prime minister in 1881 and again from 1888 to 1885, France 
started upon its great modem colonial period. French 
statesmen began to dream of a vast African empire to reach 
from the Mediterranean Sea to the Congo. Their explorers, 
scientists, soldiers, and traders set out to make the dream 
a reality. In 1881 in pursuance of Ferry's policy, France 
seized Tunis. Within the next year, France had established 

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herself in control of the upper Senegal and Sahara regions ; 
in 1882 she controlled the Middle Congo. By 1890 she 
had occupied the territory between the Senegal and the 
Niger rivers, had located a strong military outpost in the 
southern Ahmadu region, and connected her Senegal terri- 
tories with the small colony of French Guinea. In 1885 she 
sent the earliest of her military expeditions to Madagascar. 
In the meanwhile she had used Cambodia and Cochin-China 
as a center from which to push forward her boundaries to 
the edge of China. In 1883 she consolidated her power by 
the acquisition of Anam and Tongking. Thus France had, 
by the pursuit of her vigorous foreign policy, gained over 
2,000,000 square miles of territory in the decade ending 
with 1890. 

Her far-flung empire and settlements in every comer of 
the earth gave Great Britain an overwhelming advantage 
in any colonial rivalry. Any one of her many dependencies 
might be made a center from which her power could be 
extended. The British explorers, scientists, traders, and 
soldiers were at the front in every part of the earth where 
there were possibilities of colonization. From small trading 
stations established by a mercantile company near the 
mouth of the river Niger, Great Britain extended her power 
between 1884 and 1886 over an immense rich and thickly 
inhabited region called (from the river) Nigeria. From the 
prosperous Cape Colony and Natal settlements established 
at the Cape of Good Hope in the southernmost extremity 
of the continent, she pushed her boundaries northward 
until by 1890 she had added Bechuanaland and Zululand, 
and had gained a foothold in Rhodesia. In eastern Africa, 
by an agreement with Germany, she assumed control 
over the large territory now known as British East Africa. 
And on the Gulf of Aden, she announced a protectorate 
over British Somaliland in 1887. During this same period 
when in western, southern, and eastern Africa she was 
acquiring these Jiuge territories, she was also expanding in 

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the Far East. Papua became a British protectorate in 
1884 ; North Borneo fell within her sphere of influence in 
1881 and was declared a protectorate in 1888; and the 
adjacent provinces of Brunei and Sarawak were added in 
the latter year. Thus in western, southern^ and eastern 
Africa, and among the islands of the Malay Archipelago, 
Great Britain was steadily advancing her colonial interests. 
Between 1880 and 1800 she added roughly a million square 
miles to her colonial possessions. Although in actual terri- 
tory Great Britain fell somewhat short of France, it must be 
remembered that a large part of French acquisitions com- 
prised the barren and unpopulated Sahara desert, whereas 
Britain's acquisitions were almost wholly of territory capable 
of great development. 

ii. After 1890 

We have purposely stopped at the year 1890 in this dis- 
cussion of colonial enterprise because in that year conflicting 
claims rendered further negotiations among the powers 
necessary if a serious conflict were to be avoided. In this 
year, and in the year immediately following, peace was 
maintained and colonial boundaries determined, not by a 
single European Congress, but by a series of important 
agreements between individual states. The inost important 
of these agreements were the following: (1) An Anglo- 
German agreement of July 1, 1890; (2) an Anglo-French 
agreement of August 5, 1890 ; (3) a Franco-German agree- 
ment of March 15, 1894; and (4) an Anglo-French agree- 
ment of March 21, 1899. We must take each of these agree- 
ments in turn, understand the conditions leading up to it, 
and appreciate its territorial and political importance. 

Of all these agreements the first, the Anglo-German of 
1890, was the most comprehensive. German expansion 
during the five years previous to this date had been con- 
tiguous to British expansion in west, southwest, and easter 
Africa. Bismarck, once interested in colonial ventures, 

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had aggressively supported German claims which infringed 
upon the territory considered by the British within their 
sphere of influence. As a result, the relations between the 
two countries became somewhat strained. After the great 
chancellor's fall in the spring of 1890, however, his successor. 
Count Caprivi, took immediate steps toward a definite 
understanding with Great Britain on matters at issue. 
Lord Salisbury, then prime minister, welcomed these ad- 
vances, so that a basis of discussion was quickly reached. 
By the final agreement, signed July 1, 1890, the boundaries 
of the Cameroons were definitely settled; the German 
territory in East Africa was extended to the borders of the 
Belgian Congo; and a long narrow strip of land, called 
derisively by the chancellor's opponents "Caprivi's finger,'* 
was secured reaching from the far upper corner of German 
Southwest Africa to the Zambesi River. Further than 
these arrangements, British influence was allowed to be 
supreme in the island of Zanzibar off the east coast in re- 
turn for the cession by Great Britain of Heligoland in the 
North Sea to Germany. 

The agreement was bitterly criticized in both countries. 
In Great Britain the extension of German East Africa to the 
Belgian Congo, cutting the route of the proposed Cape to 
Cairo railroad, was particularly blamed. In Germany the 
relinquishment of the claims to vast territories in Africa and 
the acceptance of the minute island of Heligoland in return 
were severely censured by a strong party inspired by the 
fallen chancellor. It was facetiously said that Germany 
has exchanged an entire suit of clothes for a trouser button. 

A month later in the same year Great Britain and France 
came to an agreement upon certain conflicting claims in 
Africa. Great Britain desired particularly that her pro- 
tectorate over Nigeria, the most promising of her African 
possessions near the equator, should be fully recognized. 
France on her part had, since 1883, been actively interested 
in the huge Island of Madagascar off the east coast, and now 

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desired the recognition of her protectorate therein. France, 
therefore, in this agreement signed August 5, 1890, accepted 
the British claims to Nigeria extending to Lake Chad, and 
in return received British support in her declaration of a 
protectorate over Madagascar. 

The Franco-German convention of 1894 completed the 
delineation of boundaries in the central Soudan. The French 
claim to Sahara, the British claim to Nigeria, and the Ger- 
man claim to German West Africa had in previous agree- 
ments been recognized, but the exact boundaries where the 
territories met in the central Soudan had not been definitely 
determined. As each of the three countries pushed forward 
its outposts to complete possession of its claim, the necessity 
for a complete understanding became evident. This under- 
standing was reached in the Franco-German Agreement, 
signed March 15, 1894. By this agreement Lake Chad 
was made the neutral boundary at which the territories of 
the three countries met, and France was enabled to extend 
her possessions southward from that point to connect with 
the French Congo. 

The last of these important agreements was the aftermath 
of the sensational Fashoda incident, over which Great 
Britain and France approached to the very verge of war. 
The situation arose out of the long-continued incapacity 
of successive Egyptian sovereigns. As a result of this 
incapacity, the condition of the people became wretched 
beyond description and the government, being in a bank- 
rupt state and without credit for further loans, was unable 
to meet its financial obligations. In 1879, in the protec- 
tion of their interests. Great Britain and France established 
through their representatives a system of Dual Control 
over Egypt, whereby these nations undertook to promote 
the material and financial welfare of the country. Three 
years later, in 1882, continued disorders compelled Great 
Britain to use force. She invited France to join her, but 
France refused. Then she invited Italy, but Italy also 

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refused. She thereupon undertook the pacification of 
Egypt alone. The British army quickly defeated the rebels. 
The Dual Control was abolished and replaced by a British 
financial adviser, and Egypt entered into the anomalous 
condition of a supposedly independent state whose sover- 
eign could take no act without the consent of a representative 
of a foreign state. The immense region of southern Egypt 
known as the Egyptian Soudan broke out in revolt at this 
time. The ineflScient soldiery and the small British force 
sent to subdue this revolt were cut to pieces. For a number 
of years the revolutionists were allowed complete sway in 
this region, the British financial adviser believing it more 
important to improve the economic conditions in the main 
part of Egypt than to spend money and lives in civil war 
to retake a southern province. In 1896, however, the 
finances and material prosperity of the country had so 
much improved that an expedition to reconquer the Egyptian 
Soudan for the Khedive was encouraged. Sir Herbert Kitch- 
ener, at the head of twenty thousand soldiers, undertook 
the task. His successive defeats of the rebel Dervishes 
in two years of campaign broke the revolt. He reached 
Khartum, in which the capital of the revolutionists had 
been located, in September of 1898. 

In the meanwhile France had hoped to take advantage 
of the situation in the Egyptian Soudan to round out the 
northeast corner of the French possessions in the Upper 
Congo and to gain access to the upper Nile. With this 
intention Major Marchand with eight officers and one 
hundred and twenty men was sent from the upper Congo 
district in the summer of 1896 with instructions to traverse 
the intervening district as far as the Nile. This small 
expedition accomplished its purpose successfully, reached 
the town of Fashoda (now called Kodok) in July of 1898, 
and there raised the French flag and took possession. 

Two months after the small French force had established 
itself at Fashoda, Kitchener*s victorious army entered the 

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town and raised the Egyptian flag over a fort not a thousand 
yards from the French headquarters. In the name of the 
Khedive of Egypt, Kitchener demanded that Marchand 
haul down the French flag and leave the territory, asserting 
that Great Britain in behalf of Egypt would never allow a 
foreign nation to gain a foothold in the valley of the Nile. 
Marchand's answer was that he received his orders from 
the French government and could not leave Fashoda until 
officially directed to do so. 

The issue was thus transferred to the chancelleries of 
Great Britain and France. While the two armed forces 
stood at Fashoda, a mud-flat in the midst of a great morass, 
the British and French ministers negotiated in Europe. 
France held that Great Britain had no rights in the valley 
of the Nile which had been acquired by "effective occupa- 
tion," and that the Khedive of Egypt, having allowed the 
revolutionists in the Soudan to retain possession of the dis- 
trict for more than a decade, had ceased to have any sover- 
eign rights over that region. Great Britain claimed on her 
part that her sphere of influence included the entire Nile 
Valley, and that by Kitchener's successful suppression of 
the revolt all the sovereign rights of the Khedive were re- 
vived. Both sides stubbornly kept to their positions. 
Popular feeling was so thoroughly aroused over the question 
that war seemed inevitable. 

Had France been in a condition at this time to support 
her claims by force, war would probably have followed, 
but certain features of the internal politics handicapped 
her. Political France was at the height of the bitter fac- 
tional quarrels excited by the revelations in the trial of 
Dreyfus for treason. France was most divided over the 
issue just at the time when Kitchener was facing Marchand 
at Fashoda. Torn by these discussions at home, and aware 
of the power of Great Britain, France had to yield. March 
21, 1899, France and Great Britain signed an agreement 
defining the French and British spheres of influence in central 

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Africa. Prance gave up all claim to the territory in the 
Egyptian Soudan, and in return received British recognition 
of her claims to extensive territory to the east and south- 
east of Lake Chad. For France, this additional territory 
rounded out her Sahara dominions south of Tripoli and 
joined these with those of the upper Congo. For Great 
Britain, the agreement barred France from access to the 
upper reaches of the Nile and secured British influence 
throughout all of Egypt. 

Only one other event of consequence need be considered in 
connection with the expansion of European powers in Africa 
during this period. The Cape Colony settlement had 
become one of Great Britain's most extensive possessions 
on the continent. The original Dutch settlers, commonly 
called Boers (peasants), had in previous years withdrawn 
to the north and founded a state (the Orange Free State) 
in which they could live and enjoy their own institutions 
free from British sovereignty. By a distinct convention 
in 1852, known as the Sand River Convention, Great Britain 
recognized the independence of the Orange Free State and 
its neighbor the Transvaal Republic. The relations between 
these coimtries and Great Britain were complicated, how- 
ever, by the discovery in 1884 of valuable gold deposits in 
the Transvaal. British prospectors migrated in huge num- 
bers to the new field. In that country they were, of course, 
subject to the Boer government. Complaints were soon 
made by the British settlers that, although they paid a large 
part of the taxes and in some districts actually outnumbered 
the Boers, they were allowed no political privileges. The 
Boers on their part undoubtedly believed that the only way 
to maintain the government in their own hands was to 
exclude the British settlers, the Uitlanders, from the suf- 
frage. The feeling grew bitter on both sides. In 1895 a 
certain Dr. Jameson, at the head of a few hundred cavalry- 
men, invaded the Transvaal with the obvious object of 
supporting by force the Uitlanders in their demands. Jame- 

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son and his troops were captured and handed over to the 
British for punishment. The incident of the raid, and 
the relatively light punishment meted out to the partici- 
pants by the British, increased the bad feeling among the 
Boers. In 1897 Great Britain sent a special commissioner 
into the Transvaal to investigate and report upon conditions. 
Upon his report in 1899, which emphasized the unfavorable 
position of the British and the hostility of the Boers, Great 
Britain demanded that her citizens in the Transvaal should 
be given political rights. The Boers, believing that com- 
pliance with the demand would amount to yielding up 
control of their country to a foreign element, refused. War 
began in October of 1899, the Orange Free State joining 
the Transvaal against Great Britain. After British reverses 
in the early months. Great Britain raised, equipped, and 
despatched to South Africa an enormous army to overcome 
the small forces of the Boers. In the final months of the 
war (1902) Great Britain had a quarter of a million troops 
in the field under Kitchener against some fifteen thousand 
Boers. Peace was made June 1, 1902. The Transvaal 
and the Orange Free State lost their independence, becom- 
ing British colonies. 

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The Entente Cordicde was formed in April, 1904. Two 
months previously, the other nation in Europe with whom 
France had an Entente, Russia, became involved in a war 
with Japan brought on by the Russian far-eastern policy. 
This war in a measure offset the diplomatic advantage 
which France gained by the Entente with England, for it 
so weakened Russia that for a decade to come she could 
not be relied upon for effective assistance in case actual 
war should follow a Franco-German dispute. In this way 
the Russo-Japanese War and its results played an important 
part in European politics, so weakening the forces hostile 
to Germany that they were not able to dispute German 
dictatorship for a decade longer. 

A, Russo-Japanese Rivalry in Asia 
i. Russian Expansion 

The existence of Russia as a disturbing factor in the Far 
East dates from almost three hundred years ago. Fifty 
years before the reign of Peter the Great, wandering bands 
of Russians had crossed the Siberian wastes and reached 
the Pacific. Russia's hold on this north <;ountry was only 
nominal, however, until the inventions of the nineteenth 
century made its possession and control from St. Peters- 
burg not only a possibility but a practicability. Perhaps 


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in this direction lay the ice-free port which the crowding 
nations to the west and southwest had denied her. Through 
the efforts of Count Muraviefif, Russia's great empire builder 
in the Far East, extensive explorations and settlements 
were made along the Amur river. Once a Russian popula- 
tion was established there, it became easy to force China 
to recognize the Russian claim, and in 1857 a treaty was 
signed whereby the left or north bank of the Amur River 
was ceded to Russia. This gave the Czar the port of 
Nikolayevsk at the mouth of the Amiu' River. In itself 
the port was not valuable, but it fiu^nished a foothold from 
which to make certain demands three years later when 
China was beaten by the combined forces of England 
and France. By a treaty in 1860, the whole of that r^on 
now known as the Maritime Province passed into Russian 
hands, and Vladivostok became a Russian port. The 
goal had not yet been attained, however, for ice closes 
Vladivostok four months of the year, so Russian eyes were 
still turned southward toward Korea and the Manchurian 

The oxt contact with the Eastern powers was in 1872, 
when Muraviefif, still impelling the Russian foreign policy, 
made demands on the island of Sakhalin, lying to the north 
of the Japanese group. A nominal Japanese sovereignty 
had existed there for two hundred years, but smaU Russian 
settlements as well dated from the beginning of the eighteenth 
century. Muraviefl at first thought its possession essential, 
since it commanded the mouth of the Amur, and therefore, 
when he was unable to secure its cession from Japan, he 
resorted to the policy which had been eflfective on the Amur 
River — that of sending settlers in numbers. Japan offered 
to buy the Russian portion, and Russia, recognizing by this 
time that she had overrated the importance of the island, 
would probably have made a bargain, but that one of 
Japan's own statesmen refused to have executed a purchase 
which was so disadvantageous to Japan. Finally, in 

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1875, the whole diflSculty was solved by a treaty which rec- 
ognized Russia's possession of Sakhalin and Japan's sover- 
eignty in the Kurile Islands. The settlement was so greatly 
in Russia's favor that it has been said that Russia pur- 
chased one Japanese property and paid for it with another. 
The unfairness of the treaty was recognized throughout 
Japan and fostered an anti-Russian feeling which increased 
with the years. 

Once in possession of Vladivostok in the Maritime Prov 
ince, Russia ceased open aggression in the Far East, but 
continued her policy of infiltration into Chinese territory. 
In 1892 was begun the construction of the Trans-Siberian 
railway. It soon became apparent that to build the rail- 
way entirely within Russian territory would be a difficult 
and. costly proceeding. If a course might, be followed 
through Manchuria which would connect Vladivostok with 
the province of Transbaikalia, there would be a huge saving 
in distance and expense of construction. Such a plan, 
however, could be followed only with the consent of China ; 
and for the moment it seemed unlikely that such an agree- 
ment would be reached. Never doubting the ultimate 
success of her plan, Russia began building the railroad 
from both ends, hoping that circumstances might arise 
which would enable her to cross Manchuria. 

ii. The Chino- Japanese War and Us ResuUs 

The Russian scheme was made possible by Japan. It 
must not be supposed that Japan was a willing agent, 
nor, indeed, a conscious one. To further her own ends, 
she brought about a situation in the Far East from which, 
without spending a cent, Russia reaped the immediate bene- 
fits. The situation was arrived at through the Chino- 
Japanese War of 1894-1895. 

The struggle between the two Oriental powers centered 
in the question of sovereignty over Korea. China's claim 

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to control dated from the twelfth century ; Japan's from the 
sixteenth. Indeed, Korea at one time or another had 
recognized both nations as having sovereign powers, and 
although she had perhaps favored China's claim» she had 
nevertheless paid a yearly tribute to the Shogun of Japan 
until the time Japan began adopting the western civiliza- 
tion. With the coming of the western customs, Korea 
severed all connection with Japan, and even, in 1873, 
refused to receive a Japanese embassy. Japan replied in 
accordance with the new methods learned from the Euro- 
pean nations, massed an intimidating force of men and ships, 
and without shedding blood, opened several Korean ports 
to Japanese trade. In the succeeding years, Japanese 
interest suffered from insurrections in the peninsula which 
were relentlessly put down with Chinese assistance. By 
clever diplomacy Japan emerged from each of these crises 
with greater and greater privileges, until in 1885 she con- 
cluded a convention with the Celestial empire, whereby 
each power agreed not to send troops into Korea without 
first notifying the other. 

A crisis in 1894 put the treaty to a test. An insurrection 
having broken out in Seoul, China dispatched troops, 
having first notified Japan of her intention. The latter 
power was now determined that the condition in Korea 
which led to continued disorders was intolerable, and ac- 
cordingly made proposals to China that the two nations 
should unite to "guarantee the future peace, order, and good 
government in Korea." China not only refused these 
offers, but declined to recognize the right of Japan to make 
them. In order to protect her own interests, Japan now 
determined to carry out the reform of the Korean govern- 
ment single-handed. The clash with China was inevitable. 

After a few preUminary skirmishes in which the Japanese 
seized Seoul, the Korean capital, war was formally declared 
on the 1st of August, 1894. The first decisive event of the 
war was a Japanese naval victory oflf the mouth of the 

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YaJu River against a greatly superior Chinese fleet. This 
master stroke enabled Japan to send five expeditions against 
China — into lower and upper Manchuria, the Liao Tung 
Peninsula, against Port Arthur, and against Wei-hai-wei. 
The expeditions were everywhere so successful that in 
April, 1895, China sued for peace. The Treaty of Shi- 
monoseki, which was signed on April 17, 1895, guaranteed 
the complete independence of Korea, opened several cities 
and rivers in China to foreign trade, indemnified Japan 
to the amount of $125,000,000, and ceded to her the Pesca- 
dores Islands, Formosa, and the Liao-Tung* Peninsula. 
The way seemed open to commercial and pohtical hegemony 
in Korea, and a foothold of actual ownership had been 
gained on the mainland. 

Japan, however, was not destined to enjoy her triumph. 
Here was the happy circumstance for which Russia had 
been waiting in order to further her own schemes, and 
almost immediately after the ratification of the Treaty 
of Shimonoseki, she induced France and Germany to unite 
with her in "suggesting" to the government at Tokyo 
that the Japanese possession of any portion of the main- 
land was undesirable as being a constant menace to the 
integrity of China and the peace of the Far East. The 
Japanese, who by this time were sufficiently acquainted 
with Occidental diplomacy to recognize the veiled threat 
under the suggestion, declared their willingness to receive 
a further indemnity of $25,000,000 in lieu of the Liao- 
Tung territory. They read the signs of the Russian menace, 
however, and began preparing for the struggle which they 

Russia now pushed her advantages to the limit. The 
Russo-Chinese bank, which was organized to further the 
building of the Trans-Siberian railway, loaned $80,000,000 
without security to China, wherewith to pay her war 
indemnity, and demanded in return the privilege of build- 
ing the railroad across Manchuria. Vladivostok was 

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connected with Transbaikalia, and a branch road was 
built southward from Harbin to connect with Port Arthur 
in the Liao-Tung Peninsula. , 

All Europe became greatly interested in Chinese affairs. 
In 1897 Germany took advantage of the murder of two 
missionaries in the Shantung province to shell and capture 
the port of Kiao-Chau. The convention which followed 
gave her a lease of this port and large commercial and 
financial concession throughout the Shantung province. 
Great Britain followed suit with a lease of the port and city 
of Wei-hai-wei. The climax came when Russia, taking 
advantage of the obligations under which she had placed 
China by her revision of the treaty of Shimonoseki and the 
subsequent loan, demanded and received a twenty-five 
year lease of Port Arthur and the Liao-Tung Peninsula — 
the very territory which she had protested against Japan's 
possessing as being inimical to the peace of the Far East ! 
To protect their newly acquired possessions, Great Britain 
and Germany fortified their new harbors, and Russia began 
pouring troops into the Manchurian province. It seemed 
for the moment as if Europe had determined upon a complete 
dismemberment of China. 

iii. Chinese Affairs 

But a momentary relief was to come from China herself. 
The Emperor Kwang-Su, who had taken steps to destroy 
the isolation of the nation and to acquire the advantages 
of the western civilization, was suddenly halted in his career 
of progress by an uprising of the conservative element 
in the Empire. The Empress Dowager, the second wife 
of the Emperor's father, sympathizing with the conserva- 
tive party, executed a coup d'Siat which placed her for a 
second time in the position of ruler of China. The up- 
rising found its expression in the insurrection led by the 
Society of Harmonious Fists, or "Boxers,** one of the many 
secret organizations of China which had declared the 

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extermination of the "Foreign Devils." Their hatred of 
everything foreign knew no bounds ; they murdered mission- 
aries, tortured and slew Christian converts in great numbers, 
and finally, in the summer of 1900, laid siege to the foreign 
legations in Fekin. For weeks the members of the legations 
withstood the savage attacks of the infuriated Boxers. 
They were buoyed up in their predicament by news of a 
relief expedition, which from time to time fltered into the 
unhappy city. Finally the rumors were verified, and in 
the middle of August the terrible strain was removed by 
the entrance into Pekin of a combined relief expedition. 
Japan, France, Germany, Russia, Great Britain, and the 
United States had joined forces for the purpose of saving 
the besieged legations. Pekin once occupied, they pro- 
ceeded to quell the Boxer disturbances in the neighboring 
provinces. When quiet was restored, the western nations 
demanded from China a huge indemnity for the atrocities 
committed, and signed an agreement for the mutual main- 
tenance of China's integrity, and for the prevention of any 
fiulher European encroachment upon Chinese territory. 

iv. Russian Relations ivith China; Japanese Intervention 

The conclusion of the trouble found Russia in full military 
possession of Manchuria, a position which she might easily 
have made permanent simply by maintaining the status 
quo until a complete peace was established in the Far East. 
Instead, she made the error of proposing to China a con- 
vention which if carried out would have made her full owner 
of Manchuria. Japan, alarmed by this aggressive move 
on the part of her competitor, persuaded Great Britain and 
the United States to unite with her in remonstrating against 
this violation of the convention of 1900. If Japan's occu- 
pation of- Manchuria in 1895 menaced the Chinese capital 
and threatened the permanent peace of the Far East, 
surely Russia's occupation of the same province in 1900 

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would do no less. The formidable array of nations united 
to preserve Chinese integrity so convinced Russia of the 
unwisdom of her demands that she not only Recalled them 
but agreed to withdraw her troops from Manchuria. The 
evacuation was to take place within eighteen months, 
one-third of the troops to be removed after each six months. 
It appeared from this convention that western aggression 
at China's expense had been stopped once and for all, and 
that the Powers were determined to keep open the door of 
equal rights in the Celestial Empire. The expectation was 
without foundation, however, for when the time came for 
the withdrawal of the troops, Russia again proposed an 
arrangement which would strengthen her hold on Man- 
churia. She was determined not to give up her hold on 
that province, and once more she turned covetous eyes on 
Korea. China's remonstrances passed unheeded. The duty 
devolved upon Japan, as the power next concerned, of in- 
sisting upon Russia's fulfillment of her own agreements. 

V. Ovihredk of the Russo-Japanese War 

The Japanese demands were reasonable enough. They 
recognized Russia's immense commercial interest in Man- 
churia; in return they asked that Russia recognize the 
corresponding interest of Japan in Korea. They asked, 
too, that Russia unite with Japan in maintaining the in- 
tegrity of China and Korea, and in guaranteeing equal 
rights within those kingdoms for all nations. In other 
words, they asked only that Russia should repeat and carry 
out the promises made at the close of the Boxer outburst. 
But Russia remained obdurate and would make no satis- 
factory reply to the Japanese notes. More Russian troops 
were sent to Manchuria, a fleet was started from Kronstadt 
on the long trip to Vladivostok, and open aggressions of a 
minor sort were begun in northern Korea. It was evident 
to the least astute what Russia was about. She meant 

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to maintain her position, and she hoped that this show of 
force would enable her to do it without the final resort of 
war. If she thought to intimidate Japan, she read the 
Japanese people badly. There had been too many humilia- 
tions already — the Sakhalin affair, the treaty of Shimono- 
seki, the leasing of Liao-Tung, and finally this refusal of 
Russia to fulfill her own promises. If the Japanese sub- 
mitted now, their nation was doomed. Without hesita- 
tion Japan declared for war and began operations with 
dramatic suddenness by torpedoing part of the Russian 
fleet before Port Arthur on the night of the 8th of February, 

In accounting for Japan's determined attitude we must 
not overlook the undoubted strengthening of national 
purpose caused by the Anglo-Japanese Entente of 1902. 
The same year that saw Russia's promise to evacuate Man- 
churia witnessed the signing of the first aUiance between 
a western and an eastern nation. The document set forth 
that both contracting parties. Great Britain and Japan, ex- 
plicitly recognized the complete independence of China 
and Korea; it announced that both nations might take 
necessary steps to safeguard their interests in the two 
kingdoms named; it stated that if, in safeguarding those 
interests, either nation became involved in war, the other 
would endeavor to keep outside nations neutral, and would 
enter the war in case the other signatory power faced two 
or more adversaries ; lastly, it stated that Japan ^'possessed 
in a peculiar degree, political, commercial, and industrial 
interest in Korea." At first glance, the agreement seems 
to be greatly in favor of Japan, since a war between her and 
Russia was imminent at the time of signing. The ex- 
planation probably lies in the fact that the future adversary 
was Russia, and that in India there still stalked the specter 
of the "bear that walks like a man." The inequality of 
terms was corrected when the Entente became a def eiisi ve and 
offensive alliance after the close of the Russo-Japanese War. 

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The task before the little empire was a huge one. In 
some respects, it was not unlike that of 1894 when she 
defeated China. She had the problem of gaining mastery 
of the sea, and then advancing against troops in Man- 
churia, while maintaining her armies from home ports. 
But in 1894 she was arrayed against an unwieldy empire 
making war with obsolete weapons, whereas now she was 
combating a strong nation possessed of huge armies and 
a modern fleet much stronger than her own. This last 
feature presented the ultimate question of success or failure. 
Of the fleets in Eastern waters, Japan's was superior to 
Russia's, but should it meet with defeat, all bope of landing 
a force in Manchuria was gone, and the war was lost. 
Should it be successful and destroy the opposing force, 
Japan would be able to land and supply suflScient troops 
in Manchuria to cope with the Russian forces already there. 
In Russia there were armies large enough to overwhelm 
the Japanese. In European waters was a fleet immensely 
superior to that of Japan. But they were both some months 
away. The Russian armies had to mobilize and travel over 
4000 miles of rail ; the fleet to make the long trip half around 
the world. With luck and skill, a decisive blow might be 
struck before these reinforcements could arrive. Haste 
was the prime requisite. 

i. Japanese Plan of Operation 

The Japanese plan may be outlined in general terms as 
follows : the invasion of Korea and its occupation as a 
base of operations; the separation of the Russian troops 
in Port Arthur and Dalny from those in the northern part 
of Manchuria; the capture of Port Arthur by assault 
if possible; a concentric advance toward some point on 
the railroad (preferably Liao-yang), there to destroy the 

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Russian army before help could arrive from Europe. In 
addition to these, there was the plan to attack the Russian 
fleet the moment it could be located. At no time did the 
Japanese even consider an attack on Russian territory — 
that, of course, was impossible. But she did mean to win 
such victories in Manchuria as would demonstrate her 
military superiority and establish beyond question her 
hegemony in the Far East. In opposition to these, the 
Russians had but one scheme of defense — delay. Time 
was essential — time in which to mobilize and ship the 
European troops, time in which to get the fleet to the China 

ii. Comparative Armaments 

The army with which Japan hoped to win the war was 
a modem one, weU equipped and well trained; Universal 
service has existed in the empire since 1871, and many of 
the officers have been trained in the best European schools. 
Every physically fit male citizen between the ages of 17 
and 40 is liable for service in either the army or navy. 
Not all those coming of age are chosen for service in the 
standing army. There are several classes of reserves in 
which varying amounts of training are given. At the 
time of the outbreak of war, there were in the active army 
and first reserve, 380,000 trained men. In the second 
line were nearly 400,000 men with some training wherewith 
to replace casualties. The men themselves were as good 
soldiers as the world has ever seen — intelligent, determined, 
possessed of a great endurance, and imbued with a wonder- 
ful spirit of sacrifice and sense of duty. 

The fighting force was divided into thirteen infantry 
divisions (the Imperial Guard division, and twelve terri- 
torial divisions) each having a combatant strength of about 
13,000 men. Each division had a reserve brigade, and there 
were in addition in the first line, two independent cavalry 
brigades, and two brigades of artillery of eighteen batteries 

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each. Each division, which was a unit complete in itself, 
consisted in round numbers of 11,400 rifles, 600 sabres, 
36 guns, and 750 engineers. The infantry was armed with 
a modem clip-using rifle; the cavalry carried sabres and 
carbines of a model similar to the rifle; and the artillery 
was equipped with an improved breech-loading three- 
inch fieldpiece, converted to the quick-firing type, but 
not quite up to- date. With each cavalry brigade was a 
battery of machine guns. 

Opposed to Japan's force was the great Russian army 
of over a million men. The system which the Czar put 
into effect in 1874 has already been described. In the 
interval between the War of 1878 and the time under dis- 
cussion, the system had been adhered to, men had been 
trained in great numbers, and an excellent mihtary staff 
had been formed. Not over a tenth of this great force, 
however, was in Manchuria when the hostilities commenced. 
The troops already in the Far East were scattered here 
and there about the province, guarding the railway and the 
fortresses. When General Kuropatkin took command in 
the war zone in March of 1904 he organized the troops 
into the 1, 11, and III Siberian Corps and a cavalry division. 
Two rifle divisions remained as fortress troops at Vladi- 
vostok and two at Port Arthur. These brought his total 
forces to 96,000 men. Mobilization of the European troops 
was begun at once, and the task of shipping them over a 
single line of railroad was carried out so well that the I, 
VII, X, XVI, and XVII European Corps, a rifle corps, and 
five reserve infantry divisions arrived in Manchuria in time to 
take part in the final great battle of Mukden in March, 1905. 

The armament was about the same as that of the Japanese. 
The infantry arm was a clip-using rifle of modem type; 
the cavalry, the sabre and rifle; but the artillery was in 
course of re-armament when war was declared. About one- 
third was armed with a new quick-firing fieldpiece much 
superior to the old type, but the excellence of the new gun 

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was more than offset by the unfamiliarity of the men with 
their weapon. The remainder was armed with a gun of 
less recent type, but none the less an effective weapon. A 
number of regiments possessed machine gun companies, but 
the use of this arm was not general throughout the army. 

iii. Naval Operations 

Not the least important factor in the final success for 
Japan was the navy. The Russian sea forces greatly out- 
numbered those of the smaller power, but they were divided 
into two fleets, one in the Baltic, and one in Asiatic waters. 
This latter fleet was still further divided into two squadrons 
which operated from the naval bases of Vladivostok and 
Port Arthur. Since the Japanese did not wait to gain a 
mastery of the sea before beginning their land operations, 
and since the two campaigns were independent of each other, 
it will be as well to outline briefly at this point the naval 
engagements of the war. On February 8, 1904, the main 
Japanese battle fleet under Vice-Admiral Togo surprised 
the opposing squadron in the harbor at Port Arthur and 
inflicted losses which temporarily had a paralyzing effect 
upon the Russians. For a time they remained inactive, 
until upon the succession to command of Admiral Mak&roff, 
they began again to play their proper part in the war. 
On the night of April 12, Togo was successful in decoying 
the Russian squadron through a field of mines, using as 
bait several smaller units of his fleet. As Mak&roff ad- 
vanced to the attack, the entire Japanese fleet steamed 
against him and forced him back through the mine field. 
One of the floating terrors struck Admiral Makiroff 's flag- 
ship, the Petropavlovak, and sent it to the bottom with every 
soul on board. This calamity had the effect of keeping the 
Russians so close to their base at Port Arthur that Togo 
was able to dispatch a squadron of seven cruisers in search 
of the Vladivostok fleet. 

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Disaster fell upon both Russian fleets almost simul- 
taneously. Upon the arrival of a Japanese army before 
Port Arthur, the squadron at that point put to sea, only to 
encounter Togo's fleet and be so damaged that it was obliged 
to put back into port. It was never able to emerge again, 
and from that day, August 10, 1904, ceased to coimt as a 
part of the active naval strength. Four days later, Kaimura 
located the Vladivostok fleet and defeated it utterly. These 
two battles established Japan's naval supremacy in the East. 

No further efforts were made to control the sea until 
March, 1905, when the Baltic fleet under Admiral Rozhest- 
vensky set sail for the China Sea. Everything had been 
staked on the outcome of the voyage, and practically every 
available ship had been added to the fleet. * It was, per- 
haps, more formidable because of its size than its quality, 
but still it was a very powerful unit. Admiral Togo wisely 
waited to receive it in Japanese waters. On the 27th of 
May, 1905, the two fleets met in the Fushima Straits at 
the entrance to the Sea of Japan, and here in a battle which 
lasted all of one afternoon, at intervals through the night, 
and the following morning, Rozhestvensky's entire fleet 
was destroyed; Thereafter Japan's position in eastern 
waters was undisputed. 

iv. Military Operations 

Let us now turn to the operations on land. Simulta- 
neously with Togo's first attack on the Russian squadron 
at Port Arthur, General Kuroki landed the First Army, 
composed of the 2d, ISth, and Guard divisions at Chemulpo, 
and on the following day, February 10, 1904, took posses- 
sion of Seoul, the Korean capital. This army of 45,000 
then started on the laborious march northward. Ice still 
bound the harbors north of Chemulpo so that the supply 
of the army was an extremely difficult problem, but little by 
little they pushed on, and in the early days of April stood 
face to face with the enemy on the Yalu River. Across 

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from the Kttle town of Wiju at the junction of the Yalu 
and the Aiho rivers, a Russian force of about 15,000 men and 
40 guns under General Zasulich occupied a position of im- 
mense strength amongst the rugged hills protected in front 
by the unfordable river, which was filled at this point with 
islands. Late in April, Kuroki's forces built bridges across 
to the islands, and then on the 1st of May began a frontal 
attack there while the 12th division crossed several miles 
upstream and bore down on the Russian left flank. But 
the frontal attack had been sufficient to push back the 
Russian lines, and in the confused retirement, the retreating 
regiments encountered the successful 12th division, which 
insured the victory by a murderous fire on their fleeing 
enemy. Zasulich now fell back toward Motienling, with 
Kuroki in full pursuit as far as Fenghuangcheng, at which 
point he waited for the advance of the other Japanese 
armies. The Russians had committed a grave error by 
allowing themselves to become entangled in a battle of 
such proportions. Zasulich's mission on the Yalu was 
simply to oppose the advance of Kuroki, and he should 
have known how impossible it was for his small force to 
engage successfully the entire First Japanese Army. 

The Second Army set*sail for the war zone as soon as 
Kuroki had released the transports. This force, composed 
of the 1st, 3d, 4th, and 5th divisions under General Oku, 
waited for the result of the battle of the Yalu, and then, 
the Port Arthur fleet having been temporarily removed 
from the sea by the April disaster, landed at Pitsevo on 
May 5 and started for the Kuan Tung peninsula to attack 
Port Arthur. At the narrowest portion of the peninsula, 
Oku discovered the field column of the Port Arthur Army 
fortified on Nanshan Hill in a position of great strength. 
The peninsula is not more than two miles wide at this point, 
and in its center rises a four-hundred-foot hill. Here the 
Russians had entrenched, constructed entanglements, and 
mounted field and siege guns. The flanks reached to the 

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sea on both sides, one of which was protected by a gun- 
boat. Twice the Japanese assaulted the position only 
to be beaten back, but at the third attempt they were able, 
with the assistance of one of their gunboats, to turn the 
Russian left and take the hill. The defeated army with- 
drew in good order into Port Arthur. 

A few days later, Dalny was entered by troops of the Ist 
division without opposition. Meanwhile two more divisions 
under General Nogi, the 6th and the 11th, had landed at 
Pitsevo, and had hurried down toward the Kuan Tung 
Peninsula. The 6th was transferred with the 1st, which 
latter division joined with the 11th to form the Third 
Army with General Nogi in command. Nogi was left to 
invest Port Arthur while Oku turned north to carry out 
the second part of the plan — the advance on liao-yang. 
The siege of Port Arthur, like that of Plevna, belongs 
properly to a study of fortification and not to a short stra- 
tegic sketch. It is sufficient to say here that the garrison 
under General StSssel maintained a splendid defense for 
seven months. During the last month occurred the assaults 
on 203 Meter Hill, by which after a frightful loss of life, 
the Japanese gained the key point of the situation. Within 
a few days after this victory, Ge'neral St5ssel, on January 
2, 1905, surrendered his garrison of 39,000. 

The march of General Oku to the north with the Second 
Army, which occurred in June, 1904, was hurriedly begun 
in order to prevent the advance of General Stakelberg, 
who with 85,000 men was marching to the assistance of the 
Port Arthur troops. Stakelberg*s advance was a move- 
ment made in direct opposition to the wishes of the Russian 
Commander-in-chief, but Port Arthur was a place of great 
political importance, and therefore, as so often happens 
in war, strategy was sacrificed to politics, with the usual 
result. General Oku's army encountered the relief expedi- 
tion near Telissu, and in a brilliant encounter defeated 
it disastrously. Stakelberg was obliged to abandon his 

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enterprise and fall back to a position near Kaiping. The 
effect of the maneuver had been to split Kuropatkin's 
army into smaller parts, which could be more easily dis- 
posed of by their opponents. The benefits were all for the 

While the Second Army was advancing against Stakel- 
berg, the 10th division, which formed the nucleus of the 
Fourth Army, was landed at Takusan. A half division was 
transferred from the First Army to its commander, General 
Nodzu, and the combined forces moved on Siuyen pre- 
paratory to the advance on Liao-yang. 

The three field armies were now ready for the concen- 
tration on the railway. Kuroki's army was in the northern 
part of the Fenshui Mountains, near M otienling ; Nodzu's 
Fourth Army was in the southern part of the same range 
near Fenshuiling Pass; Oku was advancing along the 
railway, and by the end of June was close to Kaiping. All 
three were united under Marshal Oyama as commander- 
in-chief, who, with his chief-of-staff, General Kodama, 
sailed from Tokyo to take command on the 6th of July. 
With his arrival the advance on Liao-yang was b^gun. 
The opposing forces were stationed on the rim of a circle 
whose center was the headquarters at Liao-yang. General 
Keller who was opposing the advance of General Kuroki 
retired from his position at Motienling without an action. 
His withdrawal allowed Kuroki to approach perilously 
near to the Russian communications to the north, and as 
a result Kuropatkin ordered the withdrawal upon Liao- 
yang of General Alexieff, who was opposing Nodzu, and 
Stakelberg, who was holding Kaiping in front of Oku. This 
retreat enabled the Second and Fourth Japanese Armies to 
unite. Still, with all the great need for haste, the Japanese 
advance was so slow that it was not until the end of August 
that the Russians occupied their entrenched lines before 

General Kuropatkin had made the most of an excellent 

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position. The defenses consisted of two lines, an inner 
and outer — the former, a line of very strong redoubts 
immediately encircling the village of Liao-yang, the latter 
a line of trenches extending in a great semicircle from 
Shoushanpou on the south to Hsiapu on the Taitzu Biver. 
To the north of the river were two other detached lines, 
the one just west of M anjuyama Hill being very important. 
The trenches themselves, which were constructed with the 
utmost care, covered the slopes of the hills south of liao- 
yang. Reserve trenches, gun emplacements, obstacles, 
communication lines — everything which could add to the 
chance of success had been carefully thought out and pre- 
pared. The right of the line was protected by the rail- 
way embankment, the left rested on Manjuyama Hill. 
To hold these lines, Kuropatkin had a force of 180,000 
men, 560 field guns, and about 35 heavy guns. 

Marshal Oyama advanced to the attack with an army 
inferior in numbers, but with all the confidence which an 
unbroken string of victories could produce. It numbered 
about 140,000 men and 524 guns. The Japanese commander 
having decided upon the offensive, the first operation was 
a forcing back of the Russians upon their trenches in order 
that the First and Fourth Armies might establish communi- 
cations. This part of the plan was carried out in the days 
of August 25-29, 1904, during which time the fighting 
to the east and south of Liao-yang gradually forced the 
Russians to withdraw within their entrenched lines. Three 
of the Russian corps occupied the trenches south of the 
Taitzu, one corps held the position north of the river, 
two cavalry divisions covered the right flank beyond the 
railway, and a reserve of two corps occupied the town of 

The battle proper commenced on the 30th of August. 
Six and one-half divisions advanced to the attack of the 
main lines south of the town, while a division, and a half 
of Kuroki*s army crossed the Taitzu without difficulty and 

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12 8 4 6 

^ ' • ' 

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lined up against the Russian left. The attacks to the south 
on the 30th and 31st of August were repelled without dif- 
ficulty, and there seemed to be no reason why Kuropatkin 
could not have caused Oyama serious annoyance by his 
defensive measures, but that on the night of August 31 
disconcerting reports reached the commander from his 
left. An exaggerated statement of the numbers of the First 
Army who had crossed the Taitzu caused Kuropatkin to 
abandon the advanced line of trenches south of the town, 
and bring in the defenders to the inner line of works. He 
planned to leave two corps to hold these redoubts and 
with the remainder of his army attack and destroy the 
Japanese troops north of the Taitzu. Before he could 
carry out this plan, however, the 1st Japanese division on 
September 1 captured the Manjuyama Hill which was the 
key to the situation north of the river. The Russian com- 
mander bent ail his. efforts to a recapture of this important 
spot on the following days, but in vain. Moreover, the 
troops of Stakelberg, whom he had sent against the Japanese 
extreme right, were so repulsed that the entire position on 
the Taitzu became untenable.- The forces in Liao-yang 
had resisted all attacks, but notwithstanding their success, 
Kuropatkin realized that the battle was lost, and con- 
sequently in the early morning of September 3 began his 
retreat upon Mukden. Strong rear guards covered the 
withdrawal, but there was little pursuit, for the victorious 
Japanese were as badly exhausted as their foe. 

There followed a cessation of hostilities for a month, during 
which period both armies endeavored to replace their losses. 
The Russians had fallen back to a position along the Sha 
River, and here the Japanese were quite content to leave 
them for a time. Then in the beginning of October, General 
Kuropatkin began an offensive. He had reorganized his 
forces into two armies, one of which he sent through the 
mountains east of Liao-yang against the Japanese right, 
and the other along the railroad full at the center of 

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his adversary's line. Both advances were checked, the 
Japanese began a counter-attack, and in the two weeks 
from October 5 to October 18 they drove the Russians 
back behind the line of the Sha River with losses of nearly . 
40,000 men. These engagements are known as the battle 
of Shaho. 

Both armies now entrenched along the Sha River, and 
operations ceased until January, 1905. The Russians were 
awaiting reinforcements from Europe, the Japanese were 
daily expecting the fall of Port Arthur and its consequent 
strengthening of their forces by the addition of Nogi's 
army. Two unsuccessful operations marked the opening of 
hostilities in the new year. General Mischenko, with a 
large cavalry .detachment, made a raid down the Hun 
Valley with the purpose of destroying the railroad in rear 
of the Japanese army. The expedition does not seem to 
have been carried out with vigor, for notwithstanding 
the size of his command, he was easily repulsed in his efforts 
to capture points on the railway. The second failure was 
an attack by General Grippenberg's army with the idea 
of tiuming the Japanese left. The battle of Sandepu, 
which was fought as a result of this offensive movement, 
took place in a terrible snowstorm on the 26th and 27tb 
of January. General Grippenberg was not checked by 
the enemy, but in the face of such severe conditions, Kuro- 
patkin decided to abandon the attempt. On the Japanese 
side, the fall of Port Arthur on January 2 released the 
army of General Nogi, and it immediately started north to 
join the command of Marshal Oyama. 

Mid-January found the opposing forces occupying a long 
entrenched line eastward from the Hunho along the Sha 
River. Kuropatkin had divided his command into three 
armies, which were disposed as follows : the 11 Army, imder 
General Kaulbars, occupied the right of the line from 
Shantan on the Hunho River to Linchunpu on the Sha, 
with one corps in reserve at Maturan; the HI Army, 

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General Bilderling commanding, continued the line from 
Linchinpu to Novgorod Hill ; and the I Army, commanded 
by General Linievitch, was widely distributed from Novo- 
gorod Hill to Kautulin Pass in the mountains. The right 
flank was covered by three regiments of cavalry at Sifantai, 
and on the left the line was extended by minor detachments 
to the Korean frontier, a hundred miles away. The last 
detachment of any size was that of General Alexieff who 
commanded a division at Sinhoshon. A general reserve, 
the XVI Corps, was at Biatapu. The whole entrenched 
line was a full fifty miles long. 

Facing this line were the Japanese on a front somewhat 
shorter. Oyama, too, had reorganized his command, had 
brought up several reserve divisions, and had organized 
a new army — the Fifth, under General Kawamura. The 
First Army (General Kuroki, with three divisions) was on 
the right of the entrenched line from the Taitzu River to 
Fyndaipu; the Fourth Army (General Nodzu, with three 
divisions) held the line from Fyndaipu to a point of the line 
south of Putiloff Hill ; and the Second Army (General Oku, 
with three divisions) extended the line westward to Lidian- 
tun. On the left flank, Hekoutai and Sandepu were strongly 
enforced. In rear of General Oku was General Nogi's 
Third Army of four divisions, on the extreme right was 
General Kawamura with the Fifth Army of four divisions, 
and a general reserve was held at Yentai. The strength 
of the adversaries was about 300,000 each. 

Oyama's plan seems to have been to feint against the 
Russian left, and then, when that should be reinforced, 
drive home his real attack in the shape of an enveloping 
movement on the Russian right, delivered by the support- 
ing army, of General Nogi. The scheme worked well. 
Fighting was begun on February 21 by Kawamura's 
army, which delivered an ritack against Alexieff at Sinhos- 
hon. By the 26th, the fighting had spread westward to 
include Kuroki's army as well, and Kuropatkin, convinced 

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that his left was bearing the brunt of the attack and was 
in danger of being turned, denuded his right of reserves 
in order to strengthen his menaced flank. Immediately 
Oyama began to envelop the Russian right. Nogi's attacks 
on the west flank began on the 1st of March, and though 
the Russians resisted desperately, they were slowly forced 
back^ the line pivoting about Putiloff Hill. To the east 
along the Sha, the Russian line remained unshaken under 
fierce assaults. But for the error of shifting his reserves 
to the east, Kuropatkin might have foiled the entire Japanese 
attack. As soon as he realized that his real danger was 
from Nogi, he ordered his reserves to return to his right 
flank, but they did not arrive in position until March 6, 
and by that time the Japanese reserves were also on the 
western front to oppose them. In the early days of Nogi's 
attack, on the 1st and 2d of March, the presence of these 
troops would have been invaluable and would probably 
have led to Nogi's repulse, but now their strength was 
offset by the added Japanese reserves from Yentai. 

In desperation, the Russian conunander now launched a 
vicious counter-attack against Nc^, but this collapsed 
after a brief fight. Nothing was left but to draw in upon 
Mukden in the hope of holding the line of the Hunho. 
The withdrawal was accomplished safely on March 7, 
the Japanese armies to the south following closely. The 
shortening of the line, however, enabled Nogi to extend 
his command farther to the north and bend it in toward 
the Russian line of communications. The impending 
danger from this source, coupled with news of serious engage- 
ments between Linievitch and Kuroki on the east, persuaded 
Kuropatkin of the inadvisability of holding Mukden longer, 
and on the night of March 9 he began the retreat toward 
Tiding. The retreat continued throughout the 10th of 
March with heavy fighting by the Russian rear guard 
under General Kaulbars. By nightfall of this day, Nogi's 
left and Kawamura's right met north of Mukden, but the 

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victorious army was so confused that a serious pursuit 
of the enemy could be undertaken only after a period of 
reorganization. Meanwhile the Russians had withdrawn 
beyond Tiding Pass, at which point the Japanese pursuit 
was eventually stopped. 

Kuropatkin's army suffered heavily by this battle, the 
losses being estimated at close to 95,000. Apart from the 
tactical errors the Russian general committed, the battle 
itself was a serious mistake. Delay was still the trump 
card of the Russians, and a slow retreat along the railroad 
would have taken the Japanese farther and farther from 
their base and at the same time would have allowed Kuropat- 
kin to strengthen his army with troops constantly arriving 
from Europe. By the end of August, the Russians would 
have had an army of 600,000 men in Manchuria to which 
Japan could have opposed not more than 860,000. 

The defeat of Rozhestvensky's fleet at Tsu-shima on the 
27th of May, 1905, was the culminating disaster of the 
war. There seems to be no doubt that from a strictly 
military viewpoint, the certainty of ultimate success lay 
with Russia. Japan had made her supreme effort, and had 
staked everything on the outcome. Had Russia still prose- 
cuted the war vigorously, the Japanese must have been 
driven back to final defeat. But the continued Russian 
disasters, and political disorders at home, had practically 
destroyed Russian credit. More, the social unrest in 
Russia was so menacing that the government felt unable 
to go on with a foreign war. With revolution imminent, 
therefore, they accepted readily President Roosevelt's 
invitation to send ministers to the United States for the 
purpose of discussing peace. 

The plenipotentiaries of the belligerent states met at 
Portsmouth, New Hampshire, on the 10th of August, 1906, 
and on the 6th of September had agreed upon terms. The 
treaty recognized Japan's "paramount political, military, 
and economic interests in Korea " ; provided for the evacua- 

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tion of Manchuria by both armies; transferred to Japan 
Russia's lease of the Liao-Tung Peninsula with all privileges 
attached thereto which had been obtained from China; 
transferred, also, the Russian railways in lower Manchuria ; 
secured for Japan the lower half of the island of Sakhalin ; 
provided for certain fishing privileges along the Siberian 
coasts; and reimbursed Japan for the amount of money 
spent on Russian prisoners over and above that spent by 
Russia on Japanese prisoners. There was no indemnity. 
For a time it was thought that the peace negotiations might 
fail of conclusion because of the question of an indemnity, 
for it was well known that the people of Japan fully eiq>ected 
to pay the expenses of the war from the Russian treasury. 
Japan's statesmen, however, knew* that it would be futile 
to demand indemnity from a state whose existence had not 
been threatened, and therefore, although they knew that 
they incurred the hostility of their countrymen in so doing , 
they limited themselves to the demands made by Japan 
before the outbreak of hostilities. 

The little empire has made the most of the advantages 
gained from the war. Although she was greatly impover- 
ished by the war, she set about enterprises both in Manchuria 
and Korea. In the latter state particularly, reforms were 
carrried out, systems of communications established, new 
industrial enterprises launched, and new methods of agri- 
culture introduced. All these activities were carried on 
in the face of a smothered antipathy on the part of the 
Koreans, which finally broke out into open rebellion in 
1907, and lasted for over two years. Determined to have 
order in Korea, Japan put down the insurrection ruthlessly 
and finally in August, 1910, abolished the kingdom and 
made Korea an integral part of the Japanese Empire. 

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The Russo-Japanese War of 1904 and 1905 had a decided 
reaction upon the political situation in Europe, especially 
upon German policies. By weakening the chief military 
power of Germany's enemies, it gave Germany the oppor- 
tunity to attempt to nullify the effects of the Entente Cordiale 
between France and Great Britain by a reassertion of her 
position and influence. Delcasse's remarkable success in 
his approaches to Italy, thus weakening the bond between 
that country and the other nations of the Triple Alliance, 
and in his establishment of the Entente Cordiale between 
France and Great Britain, had filled the German states- 
men with alarm. The German leadership in international 
affairs, which had been the outstanding fact in European 
policies since 1871, was believed to be seriously threatened 
by the revival of French initiative and independence. 
Fully aware of the existence in France of a determined 
party in favor of measures to recover Alsace and Lorraine, 
the Germans interpreted every move of the French diplo- 
mats as directed toward this end, and believed that such a 
result was to be thwarted only by the maintenance of 
unquestioned German hegemony in European affairs. 


For a demonstration of Germany's position in European 
affairs, her statesmen chose to raise an issue in Morocco. 
This country, the richest and most desirable of the remain- 


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ing unclaimed countries in Africa, had been falling gradually 
under the influence of Prance. It had territory of more 
than 200,000 square miles (slightly larger than France) and 
a population of only 5,000,000; its climate was temperate, 
its soil fertile, and its undeveloped resources of enormous 
value ; it was the thoroughfare for the commerce of northern 
Africa and Sahara; and its government, corrupt and in- 
efficient, was ia constant temptation to European powers 
to intervene. Prance, having gained control of Algiers to 
the east and the vast Sahara region to the south, had marked 
Morocco for her next great colonial extension, and had 
long kept Prench agents in the country building and ex- 
tending Prench interests. Delcass6 had taken a great stride 
toward the full realization of Prench ambitions in Morocco 
by his success in his Entente Cordiale wiih Great Britain, 
it being recognized in the Anglo-Prench convention, that 
"it appertains to Prance, more particularly as a Power 
whose dominions are coterminous for a great distance with 
those of Morocco, to preserve order in that country and to 
provide assistance for the purpose of all administrative, 
economic, financial, and military reforms which it may 
require." In certain secret provisions of this same conven- 
tion (not made public until 1911) the two countries hinted 
at "the event of either government finding itself con- 
strained, by the force of circumstances, to modify the policy 
with respect to Egypt or Morocco" — a direct anticipation 
of the probability of a Prench protectorate in the latter 
country. Furthermore Delcass6 treated with Spain in the 
Moroccan question (October 8, 1904) in a convention which, 
although openly stating that the two countries were "firmly 
attached to the integrity of the Moorish Empire under the 
sovereignty of the Sultan," secretly, as in the Anglo-Prench 
Convention, provided for the possible future establishment 
of Prench poUtical control over the country. Germany had 
not been consulted with respect to these treaties, presumably 
because Delcass6 had not believed German interests affected^ 

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and the Anglo-French and the Spanish-French conventions 
had not been directly submitted to the chancellery at Berlin. 
The German foreign oflSce, however, was well informed by 
its own agents of what had taken place, probably even to 
the extent of knowing of the existence and general import 
of the secret articles in the two conventions. From the 
German point of view, these confidential and secret negotia- 
tions on a colonial matter of great importance, imdertaken 
and carried through by France without taking into account 
the will or wishes of Germany, presented an opportimity 
for an effective German protest which might establish Ger- 
many's right to a voice henceforth in international affairs 
in all parts of the world. If her protest were effective, 
German prestige and authority would be reestablished. 

The government chose a striking time to make its dem- 
onstration. On the one hand, the Russian army had just 
suffered in the operations around Mukden (February 21- 
March 9, 1905) what seemed to be a decisive defeat at the 
hands of the Japanese, and the Russian civil population in 
European Russia was apparently on the verge of open 
rebellion. On the other hand, France, just beginning to 
act in conformity with her powers under the Anglo-French 
and Spanish-French conventions, had loaned 62,500,000 
francs to the Moroccan government, and had presented 
(February, 1905) to that government a program of economic, 
financial, and military reforms which, if put into effect, 
would give to France all of the powers of a protectorate over 

The German intervention was dramatic in the extreme. 
On the last day of March, 1905, Emperor William II, 
while cruising in the Mediterranean, suddenly and unex- 
pectedly disembarked at Tangier and spoke to the following 
effect : 

"It is to the Sultan in his position of an independent sovereign 
that I am paying my visit to-day. I hope that under the sover- 
eignty of the Sultan a free Morocco wiU remain, open to the 

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peaceful rivalry of all nations, without monopoly or annexation, 
on the basis of absolute equality. The object of my visit to 
Tangier is to make it known that I am determined to do all that 
is in my power to safeguard efficaciously the interests of Germany 
in Morocco, for I look upon the Sultan as an absolutely independent 

The attitude and purposes of Germany were at once inter- 
preted in Paris as a direct thrust at the recently acquired 
initiative and independence of France and at the new 
alliance with England. Although the German Emperor 
based his intervention on the commercial interests of his 
subjects in Morocco, French statesmen were quick to point 
out the fact that imports of German goods formed the 
insignificant amount of 9% of the total imports of Morocco, 
and that no discrimination had been made or threatened 
against this German commerce. Frenchmen saw a deeper 
political purpose behind the Emperor's act, an effort to 
humiliate France and break down the international struc- 
ture Delcass6 had reared during the preceding six years. 
An interview given out in Paris by Prince Henckel von 
Donnersmarck, a man of great wealth and of high standing 
in German oflScial circles, confirmed French opinion : 

""If yoiu* agreements with England looked only to the main- 
tenance of European peace, we should have sincerely approved 
them; but unfortunately the opinions of the newspapers which 
assume to reflect the opinion of the government, certain con- 
versations which had the ear-marks of official declaration, the 
statements made in Paris by King Edward VII, have all given us 
to understand that the chief object of the Entente Cordiale was 
the isolation of Germany, preceding and preparing for an ap- 
proaching attack. At length, in disposing of this matter without 
consulting us, without informing us of the empire of Morocco 
where we had interests, you keenly offended the Emperor and 
the German people. 

" Are these the p>olitics of France ? Or must we consider them 
the personal conception of M. Delcass6 ? 

*' If you think that your minister of Foreign Affairs has engaged 
your country in too adventurous a course, acknowledge it by 

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di^iensing with his services and especially by giving a new direc- 
tion to your foreign policy. 

" The person of M. Delcass6 does not concern us, but his policy 
constitutes a menace to Germany. You can rest assured that we 
shall not wait to have it realized. The Emperor does not desire 
war. His principal wish is to further the development and ex- 
pansion of German commerce. The German fleet, which he 
wishes to see numerous and powerful, is only the means for carry- 
ing out peaceful purposes. . . . 

" Give up the minister whose sole ambition is to disturb the peace 
of Eim)pe, and adopt frankly with Germany a loyal and open 
policy, the only one worthy of a great nation like yours, if you 
wish to preserve the peace of the world." (Tardieu : La Prance 
^et les alliances. Se Edition, p. 217 ff.) 

Germany's next step in this crisis was to enlist the aid 
of the Sultan of Morocco in a demand for a European con- 
ference in the Moroccan question. Again the German 
diplomats waited until a catastrophe to Russia had em* 
phasized her weakness. On May 27, 1905, the Russian 
fleet was annihilated in the battle of Tsu-shima. Three 
days later the Sultan of Morocco, obviously at German 
dictation, submitted a demand for a conference of the 
European powers upon the reforms presented by France. 
Germany took occasion to support officially the Sultan's 
request, and let it be known informally, but none the less 
emphatically, that she intended to stand behind the Sultan 
with all her power. 

Prance was placed in a most difficult position. By her 
treaties with Italy, Great Britain, and Spain she had ac- 
quired special political privileges in her dealings with 
Morocco, privileges which could lead logically to the estab- 
lishment of a protectorate. To yield to the Sultan's demand 
as supported by Germany would mean the loss of all she 
had gained and would be a national humiliation and dis- 
grace. Her greatest military ally, Russia, however, was 
powerless to give her the aid that she desired, and careful 
reports concerning her own mihtary conditions revealed 


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the impossibility of coping successfully with so well-prepared 
an enemy as Germany. Great Britain's strength was 
purely naval: her military aid, oflFered (it has been said) 
in the shape of 100,000 men to be landed in Schleswig- 
Holstein, would not be great enough to insure a victory 
for the Entente. In spite of all these obstacles, Delcasse, 
desperate at the threatened collapse of his work, urged 
France to accept the German challenge. M. Rouvier, the 
prime minister, and his colleagues were reluctantly forced 
to veto Delcass^'s proposals. Delcass6 thereupon (June 12, 
1905) resigned from the ministry and a few days later Ger- 
many was informed that France would recommend the 
acceptance of the Sultan's request for a conference. 

In the first stage of the proceedings, then, German policy 
had scored a great triumph. She had forced her will on 
Europe ; she had brought about the resignation of a minister 
in a foreign cabinet, who was supposed to be responsible for 
policies distasteful to her; she had, it was thought, ac- 
quired influence with the Sultan of Morocco by her support ; 
and — perhaps in the eyes of some most important of all — 
she had by a threat of war tested the strength of the alliance 
binding France with Russia on the one hand and with Great 
Britain on the other, and found it weak. Statesmen in 
Germany looked forward with great confidence to a con- 
tinuation of the success of her diplomats in the conference. 

i. The Algeciras Conference 

When the representatives of the Powers met in the con- 
ference of Algeciras, held in the sleepy little town on the 
Spanish coast near by the Strait of Gibraltar from January 
to April, 1906, the international situation had radically 
changed. Europe had been subjected to an intense strain 
for the six months preceding and each of the powers had 
been busy in getting ready for an emergency. France had 
used the intervening months to prepare herself for possible 

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war ; Russia had signed the peace with Japan and, in spite 
of her weakness, was by no means absolutely helpless ; and 
Great Britain, appreciating more fully the danger to her- 
self from the German policy, had completed her military 
plans in case of war. Germany was no longer able to coimt 
upon the weakness of her enemies for her own success. 

The first weeks of the conference were characterized 
by overbearing and impossible demands on the part of 
German representatives. Nothing less than the complete 
independence of Morocco and a public recognition of the 
abaolvie sovereignly of the Sultan would be acceptable to 
them. They found, however, little support for their de- 
mands among the representatives of the other powers. 
Great Britain, Russia, and Spain supported France as a 
matter of course. Sir Edward Grey going so far as to make 
a declaration to the French ambassador : 

" K war was forced up>on Prance then on the question of Morocco 
— a question which had just been made the subject of agreement 
between this country and Prance, an agreement extremely popular 
on both sides — if out of this agreement war was forced on France 
at this time, in his view public opinion in this country would have 
rallied to the material support of Prance." 

Italy let it be known that she would not in the Moroccan 
quarrel sacrifice her imderstandings with Great Britain 
and France; and the representatives of the United States, 
wholly neutral on the issue because the vital interests of 
their country were in no way involved, voted consistently 
for the French proposals. Germany and Austria-Hungary 
stood alone. Under such conditions, the German repre- 
sentatives were forced to moderate their demands. 

ii. The Algeciras Treaty 

The final Act of Algeciras, a document of 123 articles, 
signed April 7, 1906, was a compromise between the Ger- 
man demands and the French position. Undoubtedly 

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some of the more chauvinistic Germans had hoped for the 
use of the '' mailed fist '' to gain a coaling station in Morocco 
or a port from which German merchants might extend 
political influences toward the interior; and certainly the 
German government had hoped for the recognition of the 
complete independence of Morocco and the full sovereignty 
of the Sultan: neither of these objects was attained. On 
the other hand, France earnestly desired recognition of 
her special political and economic interests in Morocco, 
with a realization of the possibiHty of the establishment of 
. a protectorate if conditions demanded : her object likewise 
was not attained. The compromise embodied in the Final 
Act accepted the principle of "the sovereignty and inde- 
pendetice of his Majesty the Sultan, the integrity of his 
dominions, and economic liberty without any inequality," 
but it put the organization and control of the police force 
into the hands of France (and Spain, for the RiflF district 
under her immediate influence) and gave those nations a 
more important share in the financial arrangements than 
other countries had. 

The results of the conference were considered unsatis- 
factory in both the chief countries interested. France, it 
is true, had gained for all practical purposes the recognition 
of the powers of her special interests in Morocco. Although 
she had to give up immediate hope of a monopoly in, or of 
a protectorate over, Morocco, yet she had been deputed 
the agent of the powers in carrying out necessary reforms. 
But the original indignity of having been forced into the 
conference against her will rankled in the minds of all 
French statesmen, and the fact that France had been forced 
to acknowledge thus publicly the principle of the Moroccan 
independence seemed to postpone indefinitely the coveted 
protectorate. Public opinion in Germany viewed the 
Algeciras Act as a diplomatic defeat for the German repre- 
sentatives. Prince von Bttlow, the chancellor, attempted 
to justify his policy in a speech to the Reichstag (April 5, 

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1906) arguing that the prestige of the German government 
and the dignity of the German Empire had been vindicated 
and safeguarded, but a vociferous party throughout the 
country could discern no material advantages in the settle- 
ment and criticized the government unsparingly. 

The most important results of the Conference of Al- 
geciras, however, were not the international agreement 
concerning the policing and financing of Morocco, but the 
revelation to all the diplomatic world of Germany's real 
ambitions and methods. The rapidly growing German 
navy, the lengthening lines of railroads in Turkish Asia 
Minor, the strong fortifications on Heligoland, the ac- 
quisition of Kiau-chau, her energetic development of com- 
mercial opportunities in every part of the world, all took 
on a new character in view of the German action at Tangier 
and Algeciras. Those statesjnen who had hesitated to 
believe that Germany cherished aggressive plans for world 
empire, and for a deciding part in world politics, were 
henceforth convinced, and prepared to shape their policy 
in accordance with this conviction. 

B. GREAT Britain's naval preparation to resist 


The ^eatest effect of this revelation of German policy 
was, naturally, produced in Great Britain. Great Britain 
possessed a world empire whose existence would be menaced 
by the establishment of a rival empire of similar extent. 
Great Britain played a part in world politics which was 
certain to be challenged by like ambitions on the part of 
Germany. British statesmanship during the next decade 
was directed toward a careful preparation to meet what was 
recognized as a "German Peril." 

The first and most obvious step for Great Britain to take 
was to increase the strength and eflSciency of her navy. 
A suspicion existed in the country that the navy had suf- 

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fered more or less severely from the natural decay and 
degeneration due to long disuse. Although on paper the 
ships outnumbered by two to one those of any other Euro- 
pean power, it was believed that discipline had been allowed 
to relax, that the marksmanship of the gunners was inferior, 
that there was a distinct shortage of sailors, and that a very 
large number of vessels of obsolete type were carried on the 
active roster. Furthermore, the disposition of the units 
of the fleets was intended to guard against France and 
Russia. The most powerful units were in the Mediter- 
ranean Sea ; strong fleets were kept in the waters of the Far 
East to guard against Russia; one fleet was stationed in 
American waters, though any legitimate reason for such 
station had long passed; the ships kept on station in the 
North Sea were maiiriy of an obsolete or obsolescent type, 
valuable only for use as trailing ships. The British fleets, 
in short, were scattered in force all over the world except 
in home waters and their eflSciency was doubtful. 

The inuninence of the German peril galvanized the navy 
into a new activity and eflSciency. Sir John Fisher, who 
had been appointed First Lord of the Admiralty in 1908, 
took steps to put the British fleet s in a state of "instant 
preparedness for war." He "scrapped" one hundred and 
seventy-five ships of the old type, using the crews of 
these "scrapped" ships to complete the complement of the 
recently built vessels. He introduced new scientific methods 
of practice to increase the eflSciency of the gunnery. He 
stiffened the discipline of the men and inspired the oflScers 
with something of his own energy and capacity. He took 
advantage of the Anglo-Japanese alliance of 1902 (which 
assured Japanese codperation with Great Britain in issues 
affecting the Far East), and of the Anglo-French Eniente 
Cordialey to make a complete redistribution of the British 
fleets, whereby the Mediterranean and Far Eastern fleets 
were greatly weakened, the North Pacific and South At- 
lantic fleets abolished, and a strong Atlantic fleet with 

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Gibraltar as its base, and a very powerful home fleet in the 
English channel and the North Sea, created. These changes 
were all made and accomplished within three years after 
Fisher's appointment. During the same period one great 
and sensational innovation was introduced in the building 
of the first Dreadnought a vessel of a new class in that its 
armament consisted entirely of big gims. The Dread- 
nought, begun in 1905 and conmiissioned late in 1906, with 
a displacement of 17,900 tons and a speed of 21 knots — 
two knots faster than the speed of any battleship com- 
missioned before that time — carried ten 12-inch guns. 
The admiralty committed itself fully to the Dreadnought 
policy by laying down and completing within the next two 
years two more of these huge vessels. 

These naval preparations of Great Britain, combined with 
the German defeat in the Algeciras Conference, gave Ger- 
man chauvinists just the argument they needed to urge 
with increased vehemence the necessity of great additions 
to the navy. The German Navy League throughout the 
whole year deluged the whole country with newspaper 
articles and pamphlets, calling for an overwhelming navy 
to cope with the jealous rivalry of other European powers. 
Under the stimulus of this propaganda, the Reichstag re- 
ceived favorably the government's naval bill of 1906. The 
main articles of this bill provided for the substitution of 
18 battleships of the largest size for the 18 medium-sized 
battleships provided in the 1900 bill, for the construction 
of six of the largest and most powerful type of ships of the 
cruiser class, and for the enlargement of the Kiel Canal and 
of certain German harbors and docks to accommodate the 
new ships. The Reichstag accepted the bill in its entirety, 
appropriating in excess of two hundred million dollars for 
the purpose. 

The navy enthusiasts were also furnished with new argu- 
ments for their propaganda by the innovation introduced 
by the Dreadnought type, or "all big gun" type, of battle- 

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ship. It was recognized at once that this type of ship, so 
far superior in speed and armament to previous types, 
rendered the old ships at once obsolete. The Dreadnought 
type was certain to be the type of the capital ships in the 
fleets of all countries. Granting this fact, all the superiority 
of the British fleet might be overcome by equaling Great 
Britain in the construction of DreadncmglUs. Germany 
and Great Britain could start on even terms in the naval 

Naval rivalry between the two nations passed into a new 
phase in 1906 and 1907 just after the enactment of the 
German Naval Bill. In Great Britain the Liberal party 
came into power with an overwhelming majority as a result 
of the elections of January, 1906. The party was pledged 
to sweeping measures of social reform. The leaders of 
the party, especially Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman, the 
prime minister, realized that the Liberal program, including 
such projects as old age insurance, sickness insurance, and 
the like, would entail enormous expense to the government. 
The problem of how the government should propose to 
raise the money for these projects was difScult. The huge 
and constantly increasing cost of naval armaments, due at 
the time to the rivalry with Germany, could, if diverted 
to social ends, go far toward meeting the eiqpenses of the 
liberal program. The liberal and radical press in Great 
Britain was at this period laying great emphasis upon a 
statement of the German Chancellor, von Billow, that Ger- 
many had ** as little idea of challenging British maritime 
supremacy as of building a railway to the moon," and was 
urging the limitation of armaments by mutual consent. 
In this situation Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman took the 
responsibility of inviting the representatives of the German 
government to discuss the possibilities of a limitation of 
armament by mutual agreement. 

This invitation was not favorably received either in Grer- 
man official or in German popular circles. Prince von 

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Btllow repudiated the suggestion that the financial burden 
was weighing heavily upon the German nation, and in- 
sisted that German naval plans should not alarm Great 
Britain. Official Germany, and probably a considerable 
part of the German nation at large, had no confidence in 
the sincerity of the British proposals. Many were inclined 
to construe these proposals as an indication of British 
weakness, arguing that, when Great Britain saw the possi- 
bility of Germany becoming equal to her on the sea by the 
rivalry in the construction of DreadnoughiSy she wished to 
limit armaments while she was still well ahead in the race. 
In spite of the imfavorable reception of her proposals in 
Germany, Great Britain persisted by trying to have the 
question considered by the representatives of all the nations 
at the second Hague conference in 1907. Again the Ger- 
nian government made its objections evident : the Emperor 
refused to be represented at the conference if the question 
of disarmament were to be brought up for discussion. 
Grermany went still further in emphasizing its intention to 
continue the rivalry in ships : in 1907 it took measures to 
increase the speed at which the ships provided by the Navy 
Bill of 1906 were constructed by legislating that three new 
Dreadnoughts a year instead of two should be begun; and 
in 1908, this annual number was raised to four. 

C. GREAT Britain's diplomatic preparation to resist 


The second important measure that Great Britain took 
in preparation for meeting the German peril was in the 
realm of diplomacy. In 1904 Great Britain had composed 
all her outstanding difficulties with France, her hereditary 
enemy: her statesmen now approached the even more 
thorny problem of composing her difficulties with another 
rival power, Russia. 

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i. Anglo-Russian Hostility 

Hostility between Great Britain and Russia, due es- 
pecially to their conflicting interests in central Asia, and 
to the Russian desires for the possession of Constantinople, 
had long been one of the accepted bases of international 
politics in Europe. In central Asia Great Britain sus- 
pected Russia of designs upon Afghanistan which, if carried 
through successfully, would give Russia a base for a power- 
ful attack upon the rich provinces of Northern India. And 
again, British statesmen were disturbed at the increase of 
Russian influence over Persia: Russian trade with Persia 
doubled between 1890 and 1900, and the Russian financiers 
secured the privilege of being Persia's only creditors, a 
privilege which, of course, carried great political influence 
with it. And still further, Great Britain's aspirations in 
Thibet conflicted with those of Russia. In 1908 the 
British government sent Colonel Younghusband on a 
mission to Thibet, a mission ostensibly commercial, but 
suspiciously political : this mission drew a vehement pro- 
test from Russia, which had long coveted Thibet for herself. 
Turning from the interests of the two nations in Central 
Asia to their interests in the Balkan regions and the Dar- 
danelles, we again find Great Britain opposing Russia. 
Great Britain was the backbone of the alliance which de- 
feated Russia in the Crimean war (1854r-1855) and kept 
her away from the Balkans; and Disraeli, representing 
the British government in the Congress of Berlin, was the 
diplomat who forced upon Russia a humiliating revision 
of the provisions of the Treaty of San Stefano. And in the 
Far East as recently as 1902 Great Britain had leagued 
herself with Japan, whose ambitions in Korea had brought 
her into sharp antagonism to Russia. Thus, in various 
parts of the world, Central Asia, the Near East, and the 
Far East, Great Britain's interests had for a long period 
conflicted with those of Russia. 

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ii. Advantages of Anglo-Russian Friendship for Great 


In 1906, however, the German peril to Great Britain 
was more real and menacing than the Russian peril. The 
German control which was being developed in Turkish 
Asia Minor threatened India and the Suez Canal more 
directly than the Russian ambitions for control of the 
Dardanelles, and the German navy was growing at the 
moment faster than the English. Inasmuch as France and 
Russia were bound in a Dual Alliance, and France and 
Great Britain in an Entente Cordiale, the possibility of 
removing the diflFerences between Russia and Great Britain, 
and thus establishing an Entente between Great Britain, 
France, and Russia, was alluring to British statesmen. 

iii. Advantages of Anglo-Russian Friendship for Russia 

Such an Entente had undoubted advantages for Russia 
also. The war with Japan had weakened her, not only in 
prestige, but in trained troops and naval strength. The 
losses of the Russian army from wounds and disease had 
been great. Although in mere man-power Russia's re- 
sources continued almost inexhaustible, her supply of 
trained soldiers had been seriously reduced. Her navy 
had been practically annihilated at Port Arthur and in the 
straits of Tsu-shima. The expenses of the war had been 
enormous, eating up all the accumulated reserves and re- 
quiring huge loans. 

In addition to these huge losses and expenses, the Rus- 
sian government was facing insubordination and rebellion, 
amounting almost to a civil war, at home. The people be- 
lieved that the Russo-Japanese War had been brought on 
by persons in the bureaucracy for their own purposes, and 
that its successful prosecution would in no way react to the 
advantage of the Russian people as a whole. The calamities 

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of the war offered an opportunity for the liberal element in 
European Russia to press their demands for political re- 
forms, especially for a representative legislative assembly. 
They were forced by the autocracy to resort, as they had 
in the past, to the instigation of disorders on a wide scale 
in order to compel any favorable action on the part of the 
government. With the mass of the troops away in the Far 
East, the government f oimd it difficult to suppress and stifle 
the evidences of popular discontent as it had so long done 
in the past. Open discussion abounded; meetings of 
protest against the government's policy were common; 
deeds of terrorism were resorted to in order to intimidate 
the government. Von Plehve, Minister of the Interior, 
who was held responsible for the iron regime in Russia since 
1902, was blown to pieces by a bomb thrown under his 
carriage in July of 1904. After his death a remarkable 
manifesto was issued by the central committee of the 
Revolutionary Socialist party, in which that party assumed 
responsibility for the assassination and defended the policy 
of terrorism by stating that "in Russia, where owing to the 
reign of despotism, no open political discussion is possible, 
where there is no redress against the impossibility of ab- 
solute power throughout the whole bureaucratic organiza- 
tion, we shall be obliged to fight the violence of tyranny 
with the force of revolutionary right." 

For a few months the government hesitated in its policy 
of suppression. Von Plehve's successor. Prince Mirski, 
counseled a more Uberal attitude, and allowed greater free- 
dom of discussion. Leading men of the Zemstvos (the 
local governing councils throughout Russia) held a Con- 
gress in St. Petersburg without opposition from Mirsky 
and drew up a petition to present to the Czar containing 
eleven main requests, including requests for dvil equality, 
inviolability of person, freedom of thought, speech, and 
press, reform in public instruction, amnesty for political 
offenders, and a representative assembly with legislative 

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powers. These "eleven points," as they were called, be- 
came the rallying cry of the liberal elements in Russia. 
Upon a Sunday in January, 1905, a host of workingmen, led 
by a government priest. Father Gapon, marched peaceably 
to the Winter Palace to present a petition containing re- 
quests similar to these "eleven points " to the "little Father." 
Troops fired upon the unarmed crowds, killing and wounding 
more than a thousand. "Bloody Sunday" was the govern- 
ment's answer to the universal demand for reform. 

In February, 1905, Prince Mirski, who had encountered 
steady opposition to his leniency from Pobiedonostzeff and 
the coterie of Grand Dukes, was replaced by Buliguin, and 
all the old familiar methods of suppression followed. Again 
the press was muzzled, and the agents of the secret police 
turned loose to ferret out the Uberals. This time, however, 
the disorders were too widespread to be quelled by the forces 
at the disposal of the government. The Social Democrats 
incited strikes and organized demonstrations ; in some places 
the peasants took law into their own hands, terrorized their 
landlords* and appropriated the lands; whole communes 
in various parts of Russia rose in revolt ; and liberals from 
all sections deluged the Czar with petitions for reform. 

The terrible defeat in the battle of Mukden (March 23, 
1905) and the annihilation of the fleet in the Straits of 
Tsu-shima (May 27-28) disheartened the bureaucrats and 
encouraged the liberals to present again their demands. 
A Zemstvo Congress once more convened,, this time at 
Moscow, and sent a deputation with an address to the 
Czar. In his answer to this deputation the Czar gave the 
first sign of weakening before the forces of the revolution : 
he promised the convocation of a Duma. In August, 1905, 
was published the imperial decree establishing this repre- 
sentative body, the Duma, but giving it merely consultative 
powers, not legislative, and fixing a very limited franchise. 

The promulgation of this decree was the signal for another 
revolutionary outburst, for its provisions fell far short of 

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the desires of the liberals. Peasants continued to terrorize 
their landlords, burn their estates, and seize their lands. The 
workingmen continued their policy of instituting strikes 
and giant street demonstrations. The culmination of the 
disorders came with the inauguration in October, 1905, of 
a general country-wide strike affecting all branches of in- 
dustry. The railroads, street railways, telegraph offices, 
post offices, electric light plants — all were paralyzed. 
Even the professional classes entered to a considerable ex- 
tent into the strike. The industrial and economic life of 
the coimtry stopped dead. 

The pressure exerted by this universal strike was too 
great to be resisted. The Czar capitulated. He dismissed 
Pobiedonostzeff (called by the liberals the "Evil Genius" 
of Russia), appointed Count Witte premier, and issued the 
famous manifesto of October 17, 1905, establishing the 
Duma with legislative powers. 

. . . "We direct our (Jovernment to carry out Our inflexible 

"1. To grant the people the immutable foundations of civil 
liberty, based on real inviolability of person, freedom of con- 
science, speech, meetings, and associations ; 

" 2. Without deferring the elections to the State Duma already 
ordered, to call to the participation in the Duma (as far as it is 
possible in view of the shortness of the time before assembling of 
the Duma) those classes of the p>opuIation now completely de- 
prived of electoral rights, leaving the ultimate development of 
the principle of electoral right in general to the newly established 
legislative order. 

" 3. To establish as an immutable rule that no law can ever 
come into force without the approval of the State Duma, and 
that the elected of the people be secured a p>ossibility' for real 
participation in supervising the legality of the acts of authorities 
appointed by Us." 

Although the strike conunittee was dissatisfied with the 
provisions of this October decree and attempted to keep 
the strike in force for another month, the granting of the 

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chief '"points" of the liberals brought a quick change for 
the better in the general situation. Liberals looked to the 
Duma for their opportunity to advance the demands for 
further reforms. Groups began to coalesce into political 
parties, with definite organization and aims. Thus even 
before the publication of the October decree, one group 
formed the Constitutional Democratic party — its mem- 
bers have been commonly called "cadets" from the initials 
of the party name — and just after the decree another group, 
alarmed by the many disorders and planning to support 
the government on the basis of that decree, organized under 
the name of the Octobrist party. 

In the meanwhile, the government proceeded in its at- 
tempt to create an organization which would partly meet 
the demands of the liberals, but would still keep its power 
intact. The Czar had promised his people a Duma, but 
before the Duma had met, he decreed a Council of Empire, 
a body to be formed chiefly of appointees from the bureau- 
cracy, with the powers of a kind of upper legislative cham- 
ber. All laws must be approved both by the Duma and 
by the Council of the Empire before their submission to 
the Czar. Thus the Council of Empire was so constituted 
as to protect the interests of autocratic power from the 
people as represented in the Duma. 

Elections to the Duma were held in March and April of 
1906, and its formal opening by the Czar in person took 
place May 10. This first Duma contained a large ma- 
jority of Constitutional Democrats. From its first meeting 
it showed itself radical and independent, urging upon the 
government important liberal measures, such as the reforma- 
tion of the membership and powers of the Council of the 
Empire^ and the responsibiUty of ministers of the Czar to 
the legislative body. After two months of stormy and 
ineffectual existence, the Czar arbitrarily dissolved the 
Duma (July 22, 1906), stating that "the representatives 
of the nation, instead of applying themselves to productive 

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legislation, had strayed into spheres beyond their compe- 
tence, had inquired into the acts of local authorities estab- 
lished by himself, and had commented upon the imperfections 
of the fundamental laws, which could only be modified by 
his imperial will." The meeting of the new Duma was set for 
March, 1907. 

iv. The Anglo-Russian Entente 

Thus, the Russian government, defeated and weakened 
by the Russo-Japanese War abroad and by the turmoil 
accompanying the political revolution at home, was willing 
to lend an ear to British proposals for an understanding. 
Representatives of the two nations took advantage of their 
meeting in the Conference of Algeciras to conduct some 
preliminary discussions on the subject. Count Cassini, 
the Russian plenipotentiary, had several long and intimate 
conversations during the tedious weeks of the conference 
with his British colleague, Sir Arthur Nicholson. After the 
conference had ended, the attempts of representatives of 
the two governments to reach an understanding continued. 
News of the parleys was published. At one time in May of 
1906 it was said that a treaty had actually been signed, 
whereupon Sir Edward Grey, the English foreign miniirter, 
took occasion to state in the House of Conmions that, al- 
though no definite treaty existed, the two governments were 
discussing amicably the questions at issue between them. 
In March of 1907 the Russian fleet visited England, and 
its officers and sailors were cordially received and enter- 
tained. In June of the same year it became officially 
known that the discussion had entered upon the stage of 
negotiations as to terms, and on the last day of August, 
1907, an Anglo-Russian agreement was actually signed at 
St. Petersburg. 

Like the Anglo-French agreement of 1904, the Anglo- 
Russian accord was no more than a settlement of thdr 
outstanding disputes, an allaying of the spirit of suspicion 

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which had so long embittered the relations between the 
two nations. Its provisions dealt with limitations of polit- 
ical influence and sovereignty in Central Asia, the quarter 
of the world in which the British and Russian interests had 
so long conflicted. Persia was divided into three zones, 
a northern, in which Russia's influence was acknowledged 
to be paramount, a southern, in which England's was 
similarly recognized, and a middle zone, for which entire 
neutrality was stipulated. The control and reform of the 
finances of unhappy Persia were to be imdertaken by the 
two countries jointly. Afghanistan, which had been one 
of the most critical issues between the nations, Russia 
yielded wholly to Great Britain, acknowledging the country 
to lie within the British sphere of influence, and renouncing 
the Russian right to send a diplomatic agent to Kabul, the 
capital. And as concerned Thibet, both nations agreed 
to respect its territorial integrity and the Chinese sover- 
eignty, and neither to interfere with its internal affairs nor 
to seek special economic concessions therein. 


The conclusion of the Anglo-Russian agreement formed 
the Triple Entente. Great Britain, France, and Russia, 
although not bound by treaties as definite in their terms as 
those which united Germany, Austria, and Italy in the 
Triple Alliance, yet had settled all their reasons for disagree- 
ment and were in a position at the first intimation of danger 
to consolidate their powers in an actual alliance. Great 
Britain had, in the face of the German danger, entirely 
abandoned her policy of "splendid isolation." By the most 
startling and unexpected series of agreements she had forti- 
fied her international position against possible attack. In 
1902 she had astonished the world by an offensive and 
defensive treaty with Japan, by which she acquired the 
aid of the strongest power in the Far East to protect her 

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vast possessions there; in 1904 she composed all of her 
outstanding difficulties with France; and in 1907 she 
agreed to an understanding on critical points with Ra»- 
sia. Great Britain, France, Russia — with Japan in the 
Far East — did not compose an actual, but a pcteniiai 

The significance of these momentous changes in \he 
status of international politics was not lost on Germany 
and her allies. Although British statesmen were convinced 
that they were acting in good faith to prepare the ground 
for defensive measures in case of attack, an aggressive body 
of German thinkers conceived these measures as offensive 
in character. These Germans pictured Great Britain as 
plotting the isolation of Germany in Europe, as drawing an 
iron ring about her with the evident intention of strai^li&g 
her. Germans found m their own increasing commerce 
the motive for what they believed to be British ambitions 
and policies. The potential entente became an actual 
entente in their imaginations with the sole purpose of 
overwhelming Germany. When the news of the dis- 
cussions between Great Britain and Russia was still 
diplomatic gossip, the German chancellor, von Bttlow, 
in a notable speech before the Reichstag (November 14, 
1906), revealed how the German leaders kx>ked upon the 
possible alliance : 

"A policy that aims to hem Germany in, to draw around us a 
circle of the Powers for the purpose of isolating us, would be a 
very dangerous policy for the peace of Europe." 

With the formation of the Triple Entente as described 
above, Europe became more than ever committed to a 
policy of rival armaments. Two great groups of powers 
with clashing interests faced each other, ready at any crisis 
to mass their forces in a decisive conflict for power. Any 
quarrel between individual members of the apposing groups 
might precipitate such a conflict, however aincereljy other 

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members might desire peace. We shall see how Europe 
passed through two periods of intense strain, one in 1908 
over the Bosnian incident and another in 1911 over the 
Moroccan issue, only to succumb at last before a relatively 
trifling quarrel in the Balkan regions. 

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THE STATES OF EUKOPE. 1005-1011. I. 

We have in the last few chapters devoted our space to a 
consideration of the important changes in international 
politics. We have outlined the growth of mutunl hostility 
between Great Britain and Grermany; the departure of 
Great Britain from her policy of isolation and the formation 
of the Entente Cordiale between Great Britain and Prance; 
the Tangier episode, the Algeciras conference, and the result- 
ing added strength to the bond between Great Britain and 
France; and finally, the removal of the most important 
elements of misunderstanding and hostility between Great 
Britain and Russia. With this last agreement, a potential 
Triple Entente faced the actual Triple Alliance. A real 
balance of power had been created, with all the possibilities 
of trouble which friction between any two states might bring. 
Following the Tangier incident, two crises of the utmost 
gravity succeeded at three-year intervals, the Young Turk 
revolution of 1908 with its consequences, and the Agadir 
episode of 1911. Before we consider these, however, it is 
well to gain a general idea of the internal conditions in the 
chief states of Europe diuing this period. The following two 
chapters, therefore, will be devoted to an outline of domestic 
problems and policies in Great Britain, France, Russia, 
Italy, Austria-Hungary, and Germany. 


The final years of the Unionist (Conservative) government 
— that is, the years from 1900 to 1905 — were marked by 

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THE STATES OF EUBOPE, 1905-1911 389 

dissension within the Unionist party and by a steady decline 
in popularity. Joseph Chamberlain became a convert to 
tariff reform. He had been in the cabinet from 1895, and 
for a few years after his conversion remained there, but in 
1902 he resigned to place before the country his convictions. 
In a series of brilliant speeches during the following years 
he endeavored to convince the electorate of the advantages 
of departing from free trade principles. He argued, not 
only for the revenue which would be made available for the 
proposed measures of social and economic reform, but espe- 
cially for the possibilities in granting preferential tariffs to the 
British colonies and thus binding them closer to the mother 
country. He pleaded with the people to " think imperially.'* 
He was able to carry the bulk of his own party with him, 
and to have fiscal reform made the first plank of the party 
platform, but the leaders made no clear-cut and definite 
statement of what they would do. Balfour agreed merely 
that a general tariff on manufactured goods and a small 
duty on imported grain were ^^not in principle objection- 
able." Chamberlain's speeches resulted in splitting his 
own party and in gaining extremely few adherents from the 

An education act, passed in 1902, served to arouse intense 
hostility on the part of large and important classes of the 
voters. It provided for the abolition of the familiar school 
boards, the transfer of their powers to the local governing 
bodies known as County or Borough Councils, and general 
local taxation for the support of all schools of whatever 
denomination. The chief criticism aroused by the bill was 
directed against the taxation features, in that people were 
forced to pay for the support both of denominational schools 
and of Board schools, although they might favor or use but 
one class. The dissenters and non-conformists were espe- 
cially enraged, for they regarded the legislation as a definite 
strengthening of the power of the Church of England over 
education. For a period after the passage of the law, popular 

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indignation nerved many to defy its provisions. Men 
refused to pay their taxes. Their property was seised and 
sold by court order. Over 70,000 summonses were issued. 
The bill, however, was enforced^ and its provisions have not 
been materially changed since. 

The Unionist party, too, lost its hold upon the laboring 
classes. The growing radicalism of the leaders of the Liberal 
party presented to the workingmen a more definite appeal 
than the known conservatism of the Unionists. The 
members of Trades Unions, especially, who had been trying 
for years to induce parliament to pass measures of social 
reform, came to believe that they could never hope for 
satisfaction under the Unionist government. 

The Unionist ministry was not unaware of its loss of 
popularity. It attempted to cater to certain of the dis- 
affected elements in the parliamentary session of 1906. 
In particular it put forward three important measures 
intended to appeal to the workingmen: (1) The Trades 
Unions and Trades Disputes Bill, (2) the Unen:^)loyed Work- 
men Bill, and (3) the Workmen's Compenaation Bill. It 
was, however, unable to carry with it the majority of its 
party in the House of Commons. The bills were so 
mutilated in their committee stages that they were either 
withdrawn before the final vote or were defeated. Hopeless 
of successfully continuing the government, the Unionist 
cabinet resigned in December, 1905. The King at once 
appointed a Liberal ministry, headed by Sir Henry Camp- 
bell-Bannerman, and both parties prepared for the general 
elections of January and February, 1906, to test thdr 
strength throughout the country. 

In the campaign the Unionists were on the defensive 
except in the one feature of tariff reform — and that issue 
had already alienated a portion of their own party. All 
the discontent of the people with the conservative policies 
expressed itself in these elections. The Liberals won the 
greatest majority that any party had received since the 

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THE STATES OF EUEOPB, 1»0«-1911 891 

oontcst over the reform bill of 1832. The new House of 
Commons showed 378 Liberals, 53 Laborites, and 88 
Nationalists, giving the Liberals a total coalition strength of 
514 ; against 131 Conservatives and 95 Labor Unionists, a 
total of 156. 

The task before the Liberals, however, in spite of their 
huge majority, was by no means simple. Though they 
might with little opposition control the liOwer House, they 
had no control over the Upper. Li the House of Ix>rds, the 
Conservatives had an overwhelming majority ready to 
stand firm against any attempts on the part of the Liberals 
to change the existing local institutions. Over all the partic* 
ular bills introduced and passed by the Liberals in the 
Commons, and vetoed, amended, or grudgingly accepted by 
the Conservatives in the liOrds, hung the shadow of an 
approaching struggle between the two Houses for power. 
The storm broke in 1909, in the contest precipitated over the 
Budget in that year, and before it had cleared in 1911, the 
House of liOrds had gone down to defeat, shorn of the powers 
it had exercised since the beginning of parliamentary govern- 
ment in England. 

The period between the gen*eral elections of January and 
February, 1906, and the passage of the epochal Parliament 
Bill of 1911 may be divided into two parts ; the one up to the 
introduction of the Budget (with its accompanying Finance 
Bill) in 1909, and the other through the passage of the Parlia- 
ment Bill of 1911. 

The first stage is marked by the initiation of measures of 
progressive social legislation by the Liberals in the House of 
Conomons. Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman stated at the 
opening of the new Parliament in 1906 that underlying every 
proposal of his government would be a policy of social re* 
construction looking toward a greater equalization of wealth 
and toward the destruction of the monopolies of the land and 
of liquor. Although we need dwell only upon the bills which 
were finally enacted into law, we may mention in passing. 

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for the sake of emphasizing the effects of the Conservative 
majority in the House of Lords^ upon the Liberal progrun, a 
few of the important bills which failed. The House of 
Lords ruined the Liberal attempts to redress the injustice in 
the Education Act of 1902, apparently because the Liberal 
bill might weaken the position of the Anglican Church ; the 
Lords vetoed a Licensing Bill passed by the Liberals in the 
Commons, because that bill penalized the liquor business 
which had so long aided the Conservative party and which 
had important representatives in the Upper House; the 
Lords destroyed a land valuation proposal because it might 
lead to "dangerous novelties "; the Lords thwarted a bill 
against plural voting (i.e. the system by which a man who can 
qualify for the suffrage by his property ownership in two or 
more constituencies has a vote in each) because they con- 
sidered it an attack upon vested interests and a dangar 
to one of the fundamental rights of property holders. 
Each of the above proposals, supported by the Liberals in 
the House of Commons, unquestionably had the approval of 
the majority of the people in the country. The successive 
instances in which the hereditary Lords balked the elected 
and representative Commons raised popular indignation 
against the Upper House to a high pitch. These instances 
must be remembered in the consideration of the historic strug- 
gle which took place between the two Houses in 190^1911. 
The Liberals did, however, succeed in passing during this 
first stage (1906-1909) a few measures in their program of 
social legislation. On March 26, 1906, the Home Secretary 
on behalf of the government introduced a Workmen's 
Compensation Act providing for the compensation of 
workmen in case of accident. Inasmuch as one element 
of the Conservative party had in 1905 favored such legisla- 
tion, this bill had an easy passage through the two Houses 
and became a law upon the royal approval December 21 
of the same year. The general purport of the Act is suffi- 
ciently indicated in its first clause : 

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THE STATES OF EUROPE^ 1906-1911 398 

*'If in any employment personal injmy by accident arising out 
of and in the course of the employment is caused to a workman^ 
his employer shall, subject as herein-after mentioned* be liable 
to pay compensation." 

Workmen suffering from what are popularly called "voca- 
tional" or "industriar* diseases — that is, diseases con- 
tracted because of the particular nature of their duties — 
were included in the scope of this act. 

A second measure introduced in the same year, a bill in 
connection with Trade Unionism, had a much more difficult 
time in the House of Lords. The Trade Unions had become 
by 1906 a great power in England. They were 1200 in 
number and had a total membership of more than two 
million. They had by previous legislation received recogni- 
tion as legal associations, but a recent judicial decision had 
opened them to suit at law for costs and damages in case 
any act of their agents caused loss to other persons. The 
particular object of the Liberals was to reverse the recent 
decision so far as to allow peaceful "'picketing'' by the 
unions. The Conservatives attacked the bill on the ground 
that it constituted the Trade Unions as a privileged class, 
exempt from prosecution at law for offenses which would 
cause the prosecution of other classes. The nature of the 
bill may be seen from the following extracts : 

''An act done in pursuance of an agreement or combination by 
tw6 or more persons shall, if done in contemplation or furtherance 
of a trade dispute, not be actionable unless the act, if done without 
any such agreement or combination, would be actionable. 

*'It shall be lawful for one or more persons, acting on their own 
behalf or on behalf of a trade union or of an individual employer 
or firm in contemplation or furtherance of a trade dispute, to 
attend at or near a house or place where a person resides or works 
or carries on business or happens to be, if they so attend merely 
for the purpose of peacefully obtaining or communicating informa- 
tion, or of peacefully persuading any person to work or abstain 
from working." 

It is probable that the Lords, having already during the 

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ye»r rejected the Bducatlon Bill and the Plural Votioj? Bill, 
feared the veto of a third popular bill. After long debate, 
they reluctantly gave their approval. The bill thereupon 
received the royal assent and became law December 21, 1906. 
A third measure of broader aoope and grater importaace 
th^^ the two preceding was introduced and passed in 1908. 
In that year Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman died, and 
Herbert Asquith succeeded him as prime minister, so it 
was imder Mr. Asquith's leadership that the Old Age Pen- 
sions Bill was presented to the Commons. This bill, like 
the Trade Unions Bill, was bitterly opposed by the Lords 
but was finally parsed because the Conservatives, having 
ahready defeated the Licensing Bill, feared the political 
effect upon the fortunes of their party of the rejection of two 
popular measures in a year. The Old Age Pensions Bill 
was introduced May 28, 1908, and, after finally passing both 
Houses, received the royal assent and became law August l, 
1908. The following extracts will show the scope of the Bill : 

^' The statutory conditions for the receipt of an old age pension 
of any person are : 

'' (1) The person must have attained the age of seventy : 

'* (i) The person must satisfy the pensions authorities that for 
at least twenty years up to the date of the receipt of any sum on 
account of a pension he has been a British subject : 

" (3) The person must satisfy the pension authorities that his 
yearly means as calculated under this act do not exceed thirty-one 
pounds ten shillings." 

The schedule of pensions is as follows : 

MiAiia or PxNsiONXB 

Where the yearly means of the pensioner as cal- 
culated under this Act 

Do not exceed ££1 

Exceed £21, but do not exceed £2S I2s. Qd. . . 
Exceed £23 l^s, 6rf. but do not exceed £26 5s. . 
Exceed £26 5s, but do not exceed £28 17s. 6d. . 
Exceed £28 178, 6d. but do not exceed £31 10*. 
Exceed £31 lOv No pension. 

!• 0> 











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THE STATES OF EUROPE* 1905-1911 30ff 

The post office was used as the agency of distribution of the 
pension. More than half a million persons drew their first 
pensions in the opening days of January, 1909, accepting this 
money as a deserved reward after a lifetime of labor. 

A fourth bill bearing upon labor conditions was the Labor 
Exchanges Bill, introduced May 20, 1909, and passed with 
little opposition through both Houses, becoming law after 
the royal assent September 20. The general nature of the 
provisions of the bill is revealed in the following extracts : 

" (1) The Board of Trade may establish and maintain, in such 
places as they think fit, labor exchanges. 

** (2) The Board of Trade may also, by such other means as they 
think fit, collect and furnish information as to employers requiring 
work people and work people seeking engagement or employment." 

The above were the most important measures of the 
Liberal program which the Dberals were able to have passed. 
Three other Bills, the Small Holdings and Allotments Bill 
(1907), the Housing and Town Planning Bill (1909), and the 
Development Bill (1909), were attempts at the partial 
solution of the Housing and Land Problems. In general^ 
these Bills were intended (1) to give opportunities to poor 
men to acquire with money borrowed from the government 
amall areas of land for cultivation, and (9) to improve living 
conditions in the more crowded portions of the towns and 
cities. All three bills were passed, after bitter opposition 
from the House of Lords. They did not, however, go very 
far toward a real solution of the problems. 

Ihe crisis between the two Houses, and the beginning of 
the second stage in the history of this period in England, 
came with the introduction of the Budget with its accom- 
panying Finance Bill in 1909. The program of social 
legislation to which the Liberals were committed and which 
in part they had already carried through entailed a large 
additional expense to the government. The Old Age 
Insurance Act alone had added at its beginning $40,000,000 
a year to the government's outlay, and this expense was 

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certain to grow steadily greater. Provision for Labor 
Exchanges, Town Planning, and Rural Development, com- 
bined with the cost of keeping the naval armament up to 
the necessary strength in view of the German increase, 
added further huge financial burdens. One method, of 
course, would have been the abandonment of the Free 
Trade principles for a protective tariff, and this method was 
advocated by a strong element among the Conservatives 
headed by the redoubtable Joseph Chamberlain. The 
Liberals, however, w re unit in their opposition to a 
protective tariff. It was, th-^ref ore, necessary for them, since 
they were in control f e government, to devise means iot 
raising additional re enue. Their proposed scheme was 
set forth in the Budget (and Finance Bill) of 1909. 

The introduction and defense of this Bill on behalf of the 
government fell to the lot of th Chancellor of the Exchequer, 
Mr. David Lloyd George. L yd George was a Welshman, 
small and slight in figure, but :lerl d audacious in debate, 
and gifted with spontaneous eloquence. He was the idol 
of his own people. He has been described as '^ the uncrowned 
Prince of Wales." It has been said that "no Welsh leado 
since the day of Owen Glendower inspired so much enthu- 
siasm among his countrymen." He had sat in the House of 
Commons among the Liberal opposition to the government 
during the ten years of Conservative supremacy, 1895 to 
1905, and had made his reputation by the brilliancy and 
force of his arguments. In Sir Henry Campbell-Banner- 
man's cabinet, Lloyd George became minister at the head of 
the Board of Trade. In that office he showed prudence, 
wisdom, and a phenomenal capacity for hard work. He 
gained the confidence of the English business world. In 
the reconstruction of the cabinet following Campbell- 
Bannerman's retirement in 1908, Lloyd George succeeded 
Asquith as Chancellor of the Exchequer. At the age of 
twenty-five this Welshman was a lawyer in a small town in 
North Wales : at the age of forty-five he was Chancellor of 

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THE STATES OF EUROPE, 1905-1911 897 

the Exchequer and a most prominent figure in the Liberal 

On April 29, 1909, Lloyd George presented his Budget to 
the House of Commons. Public expectation had been 
aroused to the highest pitch, and the chamber was crowded. 
He dwelt at some length upon the hiunanitarian nature of 
the program of the social legislation which the Liberal party 
was carrying through : 

"'I come to the consideration of the social problems 
which are urgently pressing for solution — problems affecting 
the lives of the people. The solution of all these questions 
involves finance. What the Government have to ask them- 
selves is this : Can the whole subject of further social reform 
be postponed until the increasing demand made upon the 
N tional Exchequer by the growth of armaments has ceased? 
Not merely can it be postponed, but ought it to be postponed ? Is 
there the slightest hope that if we deferred consideration of the mat- 
ter, w are likely within a generation to £nd any more favorable 
moment for attending to it? And w. to ask ourselves this 
further question : If we put off dealing with these social sores, are 
the evils which arise from them not likely to grow and to fester, 
until finally the loss which the country sustains will be infinitely 
greater than anything it would have to bear in paying the cost of an 
immediate remedy. There are hundreds of thousands of men, 
women, and children in this country now enduring hardships for 
which the sternest judge would net hold them responsible ; hard- 
ships entirely due to circumstances over which they have not the 
slightest command ; the fluctuations and changes of trade — even 
of fashions ; ill-health and the premature breakdown or death of 
the bread-winner. Owing to events of this kind, all of them be- 
yond human control — at least beyond the control of the victims — 
thousands, and I am not sure I should b wrong if I said millions, 
are precipitated into a condition of acute distress and poverty. 
How many people there are of this kind in this wealthy land the 
figures of old age pensions have thrown a very unpleasant light 
upon. Is it fair, is it just, is it humane, is it honorable, is it safe 
to subject such a multitude of our poor fellow-countrymen and 
countrywomen to continued endurance of these miseries until 
nations have learnt enough wisdom not to squander their resources 
on these huge machines for the destruction of human life? I 

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have no doubt as to the answer which will be given to that 

question by a nation as rich in humanity as it is in sU^^Z* 

At one point, he took occasion to comment upon the German 
plans for social legislation inaugurated by Bismarck. 

'"Wheu Bismarck was strengthening the foundations of the 
new German Empire one of the very first tasks he undertook 
was the organization of a scheme which insured the German 
workmen and their families against the worst evils which 
ensue from these common accidents of life. And a superb 
scheme it is. It has saved an incalculable amount of human 
misery to hundreds of thousands and possibly millions of people 
who never deserved it. 

''Wherever I went in Germany, north or south, and whomever 
I met, whether it was an employer or a workman, a Conservative 
or a Liberal, a Socialist or a Trade Union Leader *— - men of all 
ranks, sections and creeds of one accord joined in lauding the 
benefits which have been conferred upon Germany by this benef- 
icent policy. Several wanted extensions, but there was not one 
who wanted to go back. The employers admitted that at first 
they did not quite like the new burdens cast upon them, but they 
now fully realise the advantages which even they derive from the 
expenditure, for it has raised the standard of the workman through* 
out Germany. By removing that element of anxiety and woiry 
from their lives it has improved their efficiency." 

Then he came to the most interesting part of his speech^ the 
presentation of the proposed means for raising money. 

"Now what are the principles upon which I intend to proceed 
in getting . . . taxes? The first principle on which I base my 
financial proposals is this — that taxation which I suggest shoold 
be imposed, while yielding in the present year not more than 
sufficient to meet this year's requirements, should be of sudi a 
character that it will produce enough revenue in the second year 
to cover the whole of our estimated liabihties for that year. And, 
moreover, that it will be of such an expansive character as to 
grow with the growing demand of the social programme which 
I have sketched without involving the necessity for imporing 
fresh taxation in addition to what I am asking ParUament to 
sanction at the present time. The second principle on whldi 
I base my proposals is that the taxes should be of sudi a character 

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as ndt to inflict anj injuiy on that trade or commerce which con- 
gtitutes the sources of our wealth. 

'"My tiuid prindple is this, that all classes of the community 
in this financial emei^pency ought to be called upon to contribute. 
I have never been able to accept the theory which I have seen 
advanced that you ought to draw a hard-and-fast line at definite 
incomes and say that no person under a certain figure should be 
expected to contribute a penny toward the burden of the good 
government of the country. In my judgment all should be 
called upon to bear their share. No voluntary association, re- 
ligious (M* philanthropic or provident, has ever been run on the 
principle of exempting any section of its membership from sub* 
Soription. They all contribute, ev^i to the widow's mite. It is 
considered not merely the duty, but the privilege and pride of all 
to share in the common burden, and the sacrifice is as widely 
distributed as is the responsibility and the profit. At the same 
time, when you come to consider whether the bulk of the taxation 
is to be raised by direct or indirect mtAua, I must point out at this 
stage — I ^all have a little mcNPe to say on this subject later cm 
— that the industrial classes, in my judgment, upon a close ex- 
amination of their contributions to local and Imperial finance, 
are paying more in proportion to their incomes than those who 
are better off. Their proportion to local finances especially is 
heavier, because, although nominally the rates are not paid by 
them, as everyone knows, they are really. For that reason the 
burden at the present moment of new taxation bears much more 
heavily in proportion to their income on that class than it does 
upon the wealthier and better-to-do classes." 

We cannot give the space here to his own discussion of the 
new taxes. Briefly summarized, these taxes were as follows : 
(1) an increase in the income tax; (2) an increase in the 
inheritaHce tax (popularly known as "death duties"), (3) 
increased taxation on such luxuries as tobacco, spirits, motor 
cars, and gasoline; (4) high license duties on public houses 
(saloons); and (5) new land taxes, especially directed (a) 
against values of land not due to the enterprise or expendi- 
tures of the owner, and (b) against land allowed to lie un- 
developed. In his peroration he declaxed his Budget to be 
a War Budget : 

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^^I am told that no Chancellor of the Exchequer has ever been 
called on to impose such heavy taxes in a time of peace. This, 
Mr. £mmott» is a War Budget. It is for raising money to wage 
implacable warfare against poverty and squalidness. I cannot 
help hoping and believing that before this generation has passed 
away we shall have advanced a great step toward that good time 
when poverty and wretchedness and human degradation which 
always follow in its camp will be as remote to the people of this 
country as the wolves which once infested its forests." 

Brief thought on the taxes summarized above will reveal 
that they fall most heavily upon the propertied classes. The 
license taxes hit the liquor interests ; the land taxes touched 
the proprietors of the huge landed estates so common 
throughout England; and the income tax and the ^' death 
duties*' bore upon all the wealthy, from whatever sources 
their riches might have been derived. The Liberals, espe- 
cially the more radical element among them, hailed the 
budget with delight. It was audacious ; it was complete ; 
it provided the necessary funds without a protective tariff. 
The Conservatives, however, both those of the party in the 
Commons and those in the Lords, inveighed against the 
Budget as revolutionary, as undermining the essential 
institutions of the country. A political contest was b^un 
which in bitterness was comparable to that preceding the 
passage of the famous reform bill of 1832. With courtesy, 
tact, unfailing good humor, and marvelous skill Lloyd 
George guided his bill through its various stages in the House 
of Commons, having it passed finally on November 4 by 
a vote of 379 to 149, a majority of 230. 

In the meanwhile, the Lords had worked themselves into 
a fury over the Budget (with its accompanying Finance 
Bill). When in the late summer the passage of the Bill in 
the House of Commons, practically in the form in which 
it had come from Lloyd George, was assured, the rumor 
spread that the Lords intended to reject it. The country 
could scarcely credit the news. The Lords had never in 
the memory of man rejected a Finance Bill, and their right 

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THE STATES OF EUBOPE, 1005-1011 401 

to do so was questionable. In a country like Great Britain, 
which has no written constitution, custom and precedent 
play a large part in creating rights. Thus by custom and 
precedent has risen the exclusive right of the Lower House 
over Finance Bills. Although by no specific law or decision 
was the House of Lords forbidden to reject a Finance Bill, 
it had from time immemorial accepted the will of the House 
of Commons in such legislation. Under these circumstances 
the declaration of Lord Lansdowne, leader of the Conserva- 
tive majority in the upper House, on November 16, that he 
intended to offer the following resolution was recognized 
as creating a national crisis : 

''That this House is not justified in giving its consent to this 
Bill until it has been submitted to the judgment of the country." 

Although by its form this resolution was intended to 
imply that the Lords did not actually reject the Finance Bill, 
but merely desired its reference to the people, this form de- 
ceived nobody. The Lords were refusing to act in conf<Hin- 
ance with the tradition of generations. Even among the 
Lords themselves were members who warned the Upper 
House solemnly of the gravity of its step. The decisive 
vote came November SO. Lord Lansdowne's motion 
was carried by a vote of 850 to 75. The Finance Bill, 
which had been passed with a majority of 230 by the 
representatives of the people, was thus defeated with 
a majority of 275 by the privileged orders in the House 
of Lords. 

Preparations were at once made for new elections. Two 
days after the rejection by the Lords, the prime minister, 
Herbert Asquith, rose in the House of Commons and moved: 

^'That the action of the House of Lords in refusing to pass into 
law the financial provisions made by this House for the service of 
the year is a breach of the Constitution and a usurpation of the 
rights of the Commons." 

His motion was enthusiastically carried by a vote of S49 


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MB TSE fiianroRT of BIIB0P£ 

to iSi, a majority of 215« Fbrliament was diM^vad aad 
the &^t began. 

In the contest the Liberals rallied to the issue of the 
power of the ComnK>ns versus the ponner <^ the Lords; the 
Consovatives drfended the action of the Upper House on 
the right of the Lords to exercise the power ot f ordpg a 
reconsideration of a Finance Bill. All the bitterness of the 
Liberals ov«r the continued efforts of the Conservatives to 
thwart their legisfattion since 1906 was compressed into the 
campaign. The pronier, Asquith, sounded the keynote of 
his party's poKcy in a famous speech at the beginning ol 
the campaign, December 10. In a striking passive he 

'"We are suddenly cerfponted with no less ttian three 
stitutional innovations. In the first place, we have the claim of 
the TJpper House not as an archaic legal survival, but as a living 
and effective right, to control the levying of tBiarion 1m the 
second place, we Iwve the claim of the same Houses a body wUeh 
cannot itself be dissolved, to compel a dissolution «f the popular 
chamber. And lastly, as a consequence and a corollary of the 
other two, we have the assertion of its p)ower to make or unmake 
the executive Government of the Crown. 

''We shall demand aothority from the eleetorate to tnwri<te 
aatteient usa^ iato an Act at Parliament and to place npon the 
Statute Book the rtcognitioiu exj^cit and conaplete, of the settled 
doctrine of our Constitution that it is beyond the province ef the 
House of Lords to meddle in any way, to ai^y degree or for any 
purpose, with our national finance. 

"So far we are on l3ie defensive. But at the same time and l^ 
the same action the House of Lords has not indeed raised but has 
tamed eo a langer issue rtilL I teU yon quite f^fiinly* and I tell 
my feHow-ooantryjoien outside, that neither I nor any other 
Liberal Minister, supported by a majority of the House of Com- 
mons, is going to submit again to the rebuffs and the humiliations 
<e( the last four years. We AsM ncft assume ^Soe and we shall 
not hold-ofioe uhIbbb we can secure the sf^eguards which -escp^ienoe 
idM)WS us to he necessary for the kgi^tive utility and ho&or «f 
the party of progress. 

" Here again what has to be done is to be done by Act of Parlia- 
ment. l%e time fer mnwrtttcn uyuwaii aa tea aitepffly ^ne 

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THE STATES OF ETTIUWE, 1905-1911 40t 

by. We are not proposing the abolition of the Honse of Lords 
or the setting up of a single Chamber system, but we do ask, and 
W6 are going to ask, the electors to say that the House of Lords 
shall be confined to the proper functions of a Second Chamber. 
The absolute veto which it at present possesses must go. The 
powers which it claims from time to time of, in effect, compelling 
us to choose between a Dissolution and — so far as legislative 
projects are concerned — legislative sterility — that power must 
go also. The people in future, when they elect a new House of 
Commons, must be able to feel, what they cannot feel now, that 
they are sending to Westminster men who will have the power 
not merely of proposing and debating, but of making laws. The 
will of the people, as deliberately expressed by their elected rep- 
resentatives, must, within the limits of the lifetime of a single 
Pariiament, be made effective.'^ 

When tlie results became known, by the end of January, 
1910, it was seen that, although the Conservatives had 
massed their forces with consummate skill and had won 
many seats from their opponents, the Liberals had retained, 
with the aid of the Irish Nationalists, a good working 
majority. The numbers were as follows in the new House : 

Liberals 875 

Laborites 40 

Nationalists 8g 

Total coalition 397 

Conservatives 873 


The Parliament met for the first time February 21, 1910. 
The Lords accepted the decision of the country at the polls, 
and with little debate passed on April 88 the Budget and 
Finance Bill which they had rejected the preceding autumn. 
Events by this time, however, had passed beyond the mere 
acceptance or rejection of the Finance Bill. The House 
of Commons, thoroughly aroused, was proceeding with a 
bill for the curtailment of the powers of the House of Lords 
when the death of King Edward VII on May 6, 1910, 
stopped political strife for the moment. The leaders of 

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the two parties held a series of conferences but were unable 
to reach an agreement. The Lords proposed certain plans 
for the reformation and reorganization of their own body, 
but the Commons was not in a mood to accept a compromise. 
The Liberal leaders, obtaining guarantees from the new King, 
George V, to abide by the decision of the voters, preferred 
to dissolve the ParUament and to have new elections on this 
new issue. Parliament, therefore, was dissolved November 
28, after a session of only ten months, and once more the 
country was torn by a political struggle. 

The fight was again bitter. The Conservatives, seeing 
that the Irish Nationalists were the support of the Liberals, 
attacked Home Rule to befog the main issue, and proposed 
the introduction of a referendum system to satisfy and catch 
deserters among the Liberal sympathizers. The Liberals 
on their side canvassed for votes on the direct issue of the 


supremacy of the Commons over the Lords, the popular 
House against the privileged House. Early in the new 
year, 1911, the results showed the following : 

Liberals £7« 

Laborites 4A 

Nationalists 84 

Coalition total 398 

Conservatives 27g 

Coalition majority 1186 

The Liberals had thus actually gained two seats in an 
election fought out on the issue of the supremacy of the 
House of Commons over the House of Lords. The way was 
entirely clear for vigorous measures to insure their suprem- 

The new Parliament, convened by King George in person, 
met Monday, February 6, 1911. Two weeks later, February 
21, Asquith introduced the Parliament Bill, the same measure 
which had been prepared and offered in 1910 and which had 
been the cause of the dissolution and appeal to the country. 

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THE STATES OF EUBOPE, 1905-1911 405 

The nature of the curb applied to the House of Lords is 
indicated by the following passages of the Bill (in its final 

1. Power of House op Lords as to Money Bilus 

(1) If a Money Bill, having been passed by the House of Com* 
mons, and sent up to the House of Lords at least one month be- 
fore the end of the session, is not passed by the House of Lords 
without amendment within one month after it is so sent up to 
that House, the Bill shall, unless the House of Commons direct to 
the contrary, be presented to His Majesty and become an Act 
of Parliament on the royal assent being signified, notwithstanding 
that the House of Lords have not consented to the Bill. 

2. Restriction of Powers of House of Lords as to Bili^ 
Other than Monet Bills 

(1) If any Public Bill (other than a Money Bill or a Bill con- 
taining any provision to extend the maximum duration of Parlia- 
ment beyond five years) is passed by the House of Commons in 
three successive sessions (whether of the same Parliament or not), 
and, having been sent up to the House of Lords at least one month 
before the end of the session, is rejected by the House of Lords 
in each of those sessions, that Bill shall, on its rejection for the 
third time by the House of Lords, unless the House of Commons 
direct to the contrary, be presented to His Majesty and become 
an Act of ParUament on the Royal Assent being signified thereto, 
notwithstanding that the House of Lords have not consented to 
the Bill : Provided that this provision shall not take effect unless 
two years have elapsed between the date of the second reading 
in the first of those sessions of the Bill in the House of Commons 
and the date on which it passes the House of Commons in the 
third of those sessions." 

It was recognized, of course, that this Bill would pass 
the House of Commons and that the real struggle would 
come in the House of Lords. On the 15th of May the Bill 
was sent up to the House of Lords by a majority of 121 on 
its final reading in the Commons. The Liberals had kept 
their majority intact : they were a united party. 

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From the middle of May to the middle of July of this 
eventful year the Parliament Bill was under consideration 
by the Lords. They added amendment after amendment, 
until, as every one realized, the original bill had entirely 
changed its complexion. With these amendments they sent 
the Bill back to the Commons. The country felt that the 
crucial and final stage of the constitutional struggle had 
begun, for all knew that the Commons woidd not accept the 
Lords' amendments but no one outside of the government 
knew what powers the Liberal leaders had for forcing the 
9ill through Parliament. All depended upon the King. 
He could, by the creation of a sufficient number of Liberal 
peers, insure a goverment majority in the Upper House and 
thus guarantee the passage of the Bill. Would he do this ? 

The last stages of the fight were marked by scenes of 
tumult and disorder. In the Lords a group of peers who 
declared that they were prepared to stand by the Lords' 
amendments to the last (and who gained the popular nick- 
name of ''Die-Hards") rallied around the figure of Lord 
Willoughby de Broke. In the Commons the Prime Minister 
was for the first time in parliamentary history insulted and 
howled down when he attempted to speak. One who wit- 
nessed the scene thus describes it : 

"It was soon evident that a section of the Tory party had 
deliberately planned to prevent him being heard. Standing at 
the Treasury Bench, firm and resolute, the Prime Minister calmly 
surveyed the turbulent and disorderly Opposition. For a quarter 
of an hour he endeavored vainly to go on with his speech. Appeal 
after appeal was made by the Speaker to the Opposition to behave 
in a manner worthy of the traditions of the House of Commons, 
and to remember that this was a serious occasion. But the young 
bloods of the Opposition were not in a mood to listen to any ad- 
monitions, even though backed by the high authority of Mr. 
Lowther. They kept up an indescribable tumult. It was a very 
unedifying exhibition of manners, and there were ironical cries 
from the Liberal benches, *0h, the British aristocracy!' — ar 
allusion to the fact that several of the noisiest interrupters were 
sons of peers. 

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"At length, ftfter he had been on hia feet for tirenty minutes, 
Mr. Aaquith was able to make himsetf heard through the dm. 
In kmd and res<»iant tones he reminded the Houae that in Great 
Britain there is a majority ctf nearly sixty in favor of the PEurUar 
ment Bill, and in the United Kingdom a majority of 190. He 
claimed that no Bill in our parliamentary history bad ever been 
so clearly and unequivocally a maim issue at a general election. 
The nation not omiy approved of the principle of the Bill, but also 
of its machinery. By their amendments the Lords wanted to sub- 
stitute for the Government plan the alternative plan rejected by 
the nation. 

"At this point the interruptions broke out afresh, and with 
greater violence than ever, and at 4 : 15, with a despairing gesture, 
the Prime Minister indicated that he could not go on. Bn- 
couraged, however, by a hearty demonstration on the Liberal 
benches, he made a fresh attempt, but it was to little purpose, 
and at last he gave up the impossible task, saying, 'I am not going 
to degrade myself — (loud Liberal cheers) — *by addressing 
arguments to persons who are determined not to listen,' *A 
situation has been created,' he added, in a loud voice that could 
be heard above the din, 'from which there is only one constitutional 
way of escape. Unless the House of Lords consent to restore this 
Bill (with reasonable amendments consistent with its principle 
and purpose) to its original shape, we shall be compelled to invoke 
the prerogative of the Crown.' " ^ 

Asquith was ready with his winning move. He dispatched 
to Mr. Balfour, the leader of the opposition in the Commons, 
the following famous letter, which in effect was an announce- 
ment that the King had consented to create, if necessary, the 
nuiaber of peers to carry the Bill in the House of Lords. 

'* 10, Downing Street, 

"20, July, 1911. 
"Dear Mr. Balfour, 

"I think it is courteous and ri^t, before any puUic deciflions 
are announced, to let you know how we regard the political situa* 

"When the Parliament Bill in the form which it has now aa* 
sumed returns to the House of Commons, we shall be oompelled 
to ask the House to disagree with the Lords' amendments. 

1 Quoted in R. ^nes : " liberalism and the House of Lords," pp. 292-293. 

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''In the circumstanoes, should the necessity arise, the Govern- 
ment will advise the King to exercise his prerogative to secure 
the passing into law of the Bill in substantially the same form in 
which it left the House of Commons, and His Majesty has been 
pleased to signify that he will consider it his duty to accept and 
act on that advice. 

"Yours sincerely, 

"H. H. Asquith/* 

A few days later the leading Lords recognized the hopeless- 
ness of the struggle. Lord Lansdowne addressed a letter 
to his supporters announcing that he had yielded and asking 
their views. 

^'Lansdowne House, 
"24 July, 1911. 
"My Lord, 

"The announcement made by the Prime Minister leaves no 
room for doubt that His Majesty's Government are now em- 
powered to force the passage of the Parliament Bill through the 
House of Lords by means of a practically unlimited creation of 
peers. We shall therefore have to decide whether, by desisting 
from further opposition, we shall render it possible for His Maj- 
esty's Government to carry the Bill in the House of Lords as at 
present constituted ; or, whether, by insisting on our amendments, 
we shall bring about a creation of peers in numbers which will 
overwhelm the present House and paralyze its action in the future 
without in any way retarding the passage of the Parliament Bill. 

"I have come to the conclusion that the former alternative is 
preferable in the interests of the House, the Unionist party, and 
the. country. Nor can I bring myself to believe that our support- 
ers will not realize that we are no longer free agents, and that the 
course that I have indicated involves no responsibility for the 
Bill, and no compUcity with those who are promoting it. 

"It is of the utmost importance that I should be made aware 
of the views of those peers who usually act with us, and I should 
therefore be grateful if your Lordships would, with the least 
possible delay, let me know whether you are prepared to support 
me in the course which I feel it my duty to recommend. 

"I have the honor to be, my Lord 

"Yours faithfully, 


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THE STATES OF EUROPE. 1W>6-1911 409 

The '"Die-Hards" stood by their principles and on the final 
division mustered 117 votes, but the threat of the creation 
of peerages in unlimited number had been effective, and Lord 
Morley for the government headed 131 members, giving the 
Parliament Bill, in the form passed by the House of Com- 
mons, a majority of 17 votes in the House of Lords. 

We have devoted much space to the Liberal government 
from 1906 to 1911 because in the events of these years, cul- 
minating with the passage of the Parliament Bill, is to be 
seen the accomplishment of a radical change in the funda- 
mental nature of the English government. The reform of 
the Upper House, or a limitation of its powers, had been a 
fruitful theme for Whig and Liberal leaders for many genera- 
tions past. Gladstone had, perhaps, issued the introduc- 
tion to the final struggle when, after the defeat of his 
Irish Home Rule Bill by the Lords, he resigned oflBce in 
1894 with a valedictory speech in which he said : 

"Sir, I do not wish to use hard words, which are easily em- 
ployed and as easily retorted — it is a game that two can play 
at — but without using hard words, without presuming to judge 
of motives, without desiring or venturing to allege imputations, 
I have felt it a duty to state what appeared to me to be indisputable 
facts. The issue which is raised between a deliberative assembly, 
elected by the votes of more than 6,000,000 people, and a delibera- 
tive assembly occupied by many men of virtue, by many men of 
talent, of course with considerable diversities and varieties, is a 
controversy which, when once raised, must go forward to an issue." 

The natiu'al conservatism of the British people, however, 
might have postponed the struggle indefinitely had not the 
House of Lords precipitated matters by rejecting the Budget 
(and Finance Bill) in 1909. This act forced the hand of 
the Liberals. Twice the government went to the people 
to be siu-e of support for their action, and both times the 
people gave them a handsome majority. In the final stages, 
the Lords were themselves convinced that they were fighting 
a losing fight> but it can hardly be said that they gave in 

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gracefully. The virulence of the periKmal attadcs upon the 
Liberal leaders has never been surpassed in pariiamesitary 
history in Great Britain, not even in the feeling excited over 
Free Trade and Parliamentary Reform. 

And what was the significance of the diange effected by 
the Parliament Bill? Henceforward the Upper House, 
though its continued existence was to be tolerated, was to 
be shorn of its power to thwart the will of the House of 
Commons. Its veto was to operate merely to delay the 
passage of legislation. The will of the people, as expressed 
through their representatives in the Commons^ was to be 
assured of supremacy. The passage of the Bill marked the 
success of a revolution by which democracy in Great Britain 
took a Kreat stride forward. 

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A, France 

Domestic political issues in France during these yearsr 
1905-1911, revolved about measures of social reform and 
the various methods proposed by different groups for ob- 
taining such reforms. The avowed aim of each group was 
the same^ namely, the betterment of general social condi- 
tions for the masses of the people throughout France : the 
means for pursuing this aim suggested by the groups de* 
voted to social reform differed radically. 

Among the most important of the political groups in 
numbers and influence during this period was the Socialist. 
The Socialist movement in France from 1871 to 190d had 
had a stormy career, not merely because of government sup* 
pression, but also because of internal dissension. And yet, 
the numb^ of voters who called themselves Socialists had 
steadily increased. In 1885, the first year the Socialists 
openly entered the contest for parliamentary representa- 
tion, they polled only 30,000 votes; in 1889 they polled 
120,000; and in 1896, 700,000. In 1905 the two most 
prominent branches of the party settled their differences 
and joined in what has been commonly known as the United 
Socialist party. In the elections of the following year, 
this p2ui;y polled nearly 1,000,000 votes and seated 54 of 
its number in the Chamber of Deputies. The United 
SociaKsts are the most compact and the best disciplined 


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of the groups in the Chamber. They constitute to-day the 
true Socialists in France, holding still to the belief in the 
necessity of a war of the classes and ultimate revolution to 
solve the social problems. 

Socialistic in nature, but not acknowledged as true So- 
cialists, are two other groups, calling themselves Independ- 
ent Socialist and Radical Sociahst (or Socialist Radical). 
The Independent Socialists are men who, though accept- 
ing socialistic principles in general, refuse to be bound by 
a strict party organization, or to commit themselves to a 
definite political program. They polled in excess of 350,000 
votes in the elections of 1906, and seated about thirty mem- 
bers in the chamber. The Radical Socialists are the most 
numerous and important of the groups with socialistic 
tendencies. They are men who, accepting the socialistic 
aims, discard the idea of a necessary class war or revolution, 
and believe that these aims can be reached by a gradual 
evolution within the state. They form a connecting link 
between the United Socialists and the Liberal Republicans 
in the Chamber. They polled over a million and a quarter 
votes in the 1906 elections, and gained two hundred seats 
in the Chamber. 

The support of the socialistic groups had long been 
necessary for the continuation of any ministry in power. 
During the stress of the Dreyfus affair and the subsequent 
separation of Church and State, the socialistic groups had 
formed a coalition with the Liberal Republicans to main- 
tain the safety of the government. In 1899 a Socialist, 
Millerand, was admitted to the cabinet. His acceptance 
of a place in the ministry created a crisis among the strict 
Socialists, who asserted that true Socialistic principles 
prevented any Socialist from taking part in a non-Socialist 
government. Millerand was, therefore, a few years later 
read out of his party, and joined the Independent Socialists. 
During his three years of office (1899-1902), however, his 
wisdom, tact, and moderation did much to dissipate the 

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THE STATES OF EUROPE, 1905-1911 418 

distrust of such small property holders as still identified 
Socialism with seizure of individual property. Briand> 
another Socialist (who with his acceptance of office auto- 
maticaUy lost his standing and became a member of the 
Independents), entered the ministry during the Church 
and State issue. And in 1906 as a result of the great vote 
polled by the several Socialistic groups, Briand again en- 
tered the ministry, and his friend and party colleague, 
Viviani, a well-known lawyer of Paris, accepted a place as 
head of the newly created Department of Labor and Social 

Both the United Socialists and the other groups with 
socialistic principles expected to work for social reform 
largely through the organizations of workmen into Trade 
Unions. The methods of the less radical groups — the 
Independent Socialists and the Radical Socialists — were 
certain, however, to be slow. A new group, not a political 
party in the ordinary sense of the word, injected itself into 
the situation at this time with a program promising more 
speedy and more complete victory for the workingmen. 
The Syndicalists, as they became known, interfered seri- 
ously with the working out of reform along the lines proposed 
by the more conservative socialist groups. 

Syndicalism has been a relatively recent development. 
It has been a movement begun and carried on by an ener- 
getic group of theorists professing whole-hearted devotion 
to the welfare of the oppressed laboring classes. Having 
at the outset socialistic ideals, these writers and organizers 
revolted from Socialism because, they claimed, in the race 
for political power in the parliament and ministry the So- 
cialists had thrown aside the truest and most fundamental 
principles of Socialism. Despising government as it existed, 
and parliaments, they made no effort to use the electoral 
machinery to have themselves returned to the legislature. 
They favored the use of the general strike, with accompany- 
ing acts of violence where necessary, by the laboring classes 

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to overthrow the centralized government and to establiah 
a system of communal governments whose sole or diief 
functions would be to control the economic life ol their 
respective communities for the good of the proletariat. 
In the last analysis, the syndicalist state would be little more 
than a collection of federated co5perative trade unions. 
The syndicalist movement reached its height in France in 
the years between 1905 and 1908. 

The crisis in the syndicalist movement during this 
period came when the Syndicalists attempted to influence 
the existing trade unions to demand, and to attempt to 
gain by strikes and violence, important social reforms. 
These trade unions had grown from 1000 with 140»000 
members in 1890 to 5000 with 850,000 members in 1906. 
They had been hotbeds of disturbances from their formation, 
fertile for the sowing of the seeds of revolution. About 
2500 of them, containing 800,000 members, were amalga- 
mated into one nation-wide organization, the Greneral Con- 
federation of Labor (Conf^6ration 66n6ral du Travail, 
commonly referred to as the C. G. T.). It was among the 
C. G. T. members that radical measures spread most rapidly. 
The Socialists had found in them a ready response in their 
early years ; but now that the main body of Socialists had 
ceased to have revolutionary aims and sought to ameliorate 
social conditions by the slow process of reform legislation, 
the Syndicalists' program proved more attractive. Syndi- 
calists gained great influence over the naticmal coimdl ol 
the C. G. T. and used this influence, in accordance with their 
policy, to instigate strikes and disorders in the industries 
of the state. It has been computed that between 1889 
and 1907 France endured 855 strikes, invohong 215,000 

These strikes and disorders continued during 1908 and 
1909, increasing rather than diminishing in number and 
importance. Every repressive measure adopted by the 
government caused interpellations in the Chamber ol Depu- 

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THE STATES OF EUBOFB, 1110^-1911 416 

tiM and ioBg debates on the workmen's rigid; to strike and 
tlie juBtioe or injustice of interference on the part of tke 
government. In these debates, the United Socialirts* 
tkoee uncompromising believers in the class war» formed the 
opposition. A single example will show the gravity of these 
strikes and of the political disputes arising therefrom* 
On March 13, 1909, a strike began at Paris in the Postal 
mad Tei^raph service, whose men were» of course* state 
e»q>lo7ees« Their special grievance originated in a dis- 
approval of the promotion methods of M. Simyan, the 
Under-Secretary of State for Posts and Telegraphs : their 
demands were the removal oi M. Simyan, freedom from 
pmushment for the strikers, and acknoi^dedgment of the 
right of state employees as well as the employees oi private 
industrial concerns to form trade unions and to go on strike. 
Their strike, spreading rapidly to other parts of the country, 
paralyzed for a time the telegraph and postal service : four 
days after it began it was estimated that 3^000,000 letters 
'mete awaiting delivery in Paris, and for a week the whole 
of Frnnce had no postal system ; telegraph service between 
Fans and London virtually ceased. Conferences between 
the strike leaders and the government proceeded daily, 
£he government finally being forced to agree not to punish 
the strikers, but refusing to dismiss M. Simyan until his 
eide of the case had been referred to the Chamber of Depu«- 
ties. On Mardi 28, the strikers, believing that they had 
won a victory, ended the strike and returned to work. 

At this point the C. G. T. (General Confederation of 
Xiafaor) entered the dispute. At a great mass meeting 
ixganized under its auspices a resolution was passed assertr 
ing the unity ai the interests of government employees aod 
the proletariat. The postmen, whose expectations of the 
vemoval of M. Simyan had been disappointed, were restless 
and dissatisfied. Hints of the C. G. T. promised a sympa^ 
thetic strike if the postmen and telegraphers again went out 
The diswHsl ol fifty-three postmen on May 3^ 1900, for 

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making revolutionary speeches started the trouble 
On the 11th of May the postmen declared a country-wide 
strike, and on the 18th, the C. G. T. gave its assistance by 
proclaiming a general strike of all its units. These strikes 
were, however, a failure. The business interests of the 
country, forewarned by what had happened in the March 
strike, had taken measures to be prepared, and the govern- 
ment acted energetically. Chambers of Commerce in the 
towns set up post offices of their own ; private automobiles 
were pressed into service to carry the mails ; a government 
officer was placed in charge of handling and canceling 
stamps; and soldiers were set to work at scMiJng letters; 
popular sympathy, which in the March strike had leaned 
toward the strikers, was wholly alienated during the May 
strike. By the end of May the strike was broken. 

In the meanwhile, these labor troubles were the subject 
of constant debate in the Chamber of Deputies. The im- 
portance of the issue at stake was fully recognized : either 
the government must control its employees, or the labor 
unions would control the government. The government 
took a firm stand on the principle that it was impossible 
to allow a strike of the state employees, and the Chamber 
of Deputies loyally supported it. Both diuing the March 
strike and the May strike the Chamber repeatedly voted 
confidence in the government, and showed itself willing to 
endorse any measures the government might think it wise 
to take to enforce its authority. 

These labor troubles entered on a new phase in the sum- 
mer of 1909 when the Clemenceau ministry fell and Aristide 
Briand, a Socialist, became premier. Briand, it is true, 
had been outlawed by the extreme Socialists in accord- 
ance with a rule they had long b^ore adopted that any So- 
cialist who accepted a position in the government ceased 
to be a member of the party. He continued to consider 
himself a Socialist, however, and as a Socialist was elevated 
to the prenuership — the first instance in history of an 

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THE STATES OF EUROPE, 1W)5-1911 417 

avowed Socialist being at the head of a great government. 
Briand had been in former days one of the most outspoken 
of the advocates of the strike as a means for the workmen 
to get their rights. In the Socialist Congress at Paris in 
1899 he spoke to the following eflFect : 

"The general strike has the seductive advantage that it is 
nothing but the practice of an intangible right. It is a revolution 
which arises within the law. The workingman refuses to carry 
the yoke of misery any farther and begins the revolution in the 
field of his legal rights." And again, at the same meeting: "If 
the command to fire is given, if the oflScers are stubborn enough to 
try to force the soldiers against their will, then the guns might be 
fired, but perhaps not in the direction the oflScers thought." 

But experience in the government had sobered him. The 
strike of state employees was diflFerent from the strike of 
employees in a privately owned industry. It was his duty 
to maintain the authority of the government in the face of 
attempts to undermine it. One of the possibilist group, 
he accepted the form of government as a means by which, 
without the destruction of existing institutions, the socialist 
refortns might be gradually introduced. He saw in the 
efforts of the Syndicalists an attempt only at destruction : 
it was not inconsistent with his own socialist principles to 
uphold the government against attacks engineered by the 
syndicalist intriguers in the C. 6. T. and among the state 

Elections were held during the two weeks following April 
24, 1910, and resulted in the maintenance of a substantial 
majority of the Radical Socialists. The Radicals and Radi- 
cal Socialists returned numbered S52, the Independent So- 
cialists 30, and the United Socialists 74; the Republicans 
93, the Nationalists 17, the Progressists 60 ; the Reaction- 
aries of various shades of opinion 71. Briand's position 
was actually strengthened by these results. 

The decisive test of the relations between the govern- 
ment and its employees came with the great railway strike 


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of October, 1910. The C. G. T. had rngsmissed a strike on 
the southern railway lines in the month of May, which had 
been concluded on terms acceptable to the men. It there- 
fore proceeded to initiate a movement for a general strike 
on the northern lines. After many futile negotiations^ the 
men's committee set October 11 for the b^inning of the 
strike. Before the end of that day, traffic on the lines of 
the Northern Railway was completely susp^ided. In a 
cabinet meeting the same day, Briand characterised the 
strike, not as economic in nature, but as political and revo- 
lutionary, and announced that the government was pre- 
pared to take energetic measures for guarding the line. The 
following day, October 12, the strike committee called a 
general strike which at once stopped all work on the northern 
and western railways. Briand's answer to this act was the 
startling and unprecedented order, issued on the same day 
as the general strike decree (October 11, 1910), mobilizing 
the 80,000 employees of the Northern Railroad for three 
weeks of military training, such miUtary training to consist 
in the maintenance of the line in working order a&d in obedi- 
ence to their official superiors. Briand's order was a bomb* 
shell in the camp of the strikers. They were liable for mili* 
tary duty as loyal French subjects. They were therefore 
confronted with the alternative of obeying their government 
OS obeying thar strike leaders. Disobedioice to their 
government would be followed by military punishment. 
Briand's measures were effective. Within a few days 
portions of the line were again in working order. Hie 
mobilisation ord^ was extended to the other gtriken 
the following day with similar results. On October 18 
the men's committee yielded and declared the strike at 
an end. 

The parliament was not in session during the strike, but 
came together shortly afterwards. Briand was at mee 
farced to defend his coarse in answer to angry interpella- 
tions from the United SodaHsto. The deb«te, wUdi b^pn 

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THE STATES OF EUBOFE. 1905-1911 410 

Octob^ 25, was marked by great violence of language 
and disorder. The United Socialists asserted that the work- 
men had a legal right to strike, and that the government's 
act in ordering mobilization had deprived French citizens 
of their privileges. Briand defended himself on the ground 
that the government was facing, not an ordinary economic 
strike, but "an enterprise designed to ruin the country, an 
anarchistic movement with civil war for its aim, and vio-» 
lence and organized destruction for its method." And 
in an impassioned moment on October 29 he turned to the 
group of United Socialists and shouted : "I am going to tell 
you something that will make you jump. If the govern- 
ment had not found in the law that which enabled it to 
remain master of the frontiers of France and master 
of its railways, which are indispensable instruments of 
the national defense — if, in a word, the government had 
found it necessary to resort to illegality, it would have 
done so." 

After stormy scenes, and accusations of being a "Dic- 
tator/' Briand and his entire cabinet resigned November 
2, 1910. He was at once recalled by President Falli^es, 
however, and intrusted with the formation of a new minis- 
try. He retained several members of the former cabinet 
and announced as one of the features of his policy certain 
changes in the legal status of trade and labor unions. What 
he intended to propose was, as he outlined it to a cabinet 
council November 15, 1910, a method of dealing with 
railroad strikes providing for: (1) a permanent concilia- 
tion board, comprising representatives of the employers 
and of the employees, and a council of arbitration; (2) 
the prohibition of any strike if arbitration is not accepted 
or while negotiations are in progress ; (3) a measure giving 
the government authority to requisition railway employees 
whenever needed; and (4) a measure to secure the rail- 
ways from damage. He would have had a diflScult time 
in obtaining the passage of legislation to the above effect : 
ys ministry wa^ cut short by his resignation February 27, 

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1911, when in debates on the subject of church legislation 
his majority declined to six votes in the Chamber. 

No important legislation dealing with the government 
control of strikes was passed during the succeeding minis- 
tries. Briand had successfully coped with the critical situa- 
tion which confronted him» and had set a precedent for 
possible action in a future emergency. He had maintained 
the authority of the government when it was challenged by 
the Syndicalist methods of the railway unions. Gradually 
the excitement over the issue died down, as new political 
questions — the budget, the electoral reform law, old age 
pensions, and the like — came up for discussion. The 
United Socialists made repeated efforts to obtain the rein- 
statement of the strikers who had been dismissed during 
the great strike, but were uniformly unsuccessful. The 
ministries kept clear of the dangerous attempt to pass into 
law the Briand program. Strikes in private industrial 
concerns continued, and the government was firm in repress- 
ing disorders caused by these; but few organizations of 
state employees ventured again to tempt the government 
to use its order of mobilization. 

B. Russia 

In Russia during this same period (1905-1911) all polit- 
ical interest centered in the history of the successive Dumas. 
The First Duma, which had met in May, 1906, was dis- 
solved by the Czar after a short and very stormy session, 
on July 21, 1906. A group of the irreconcilables in this 
First Duma assembled; immediately after the dissolution, 
at Viborg in Finland (in more or less conscious imitation of 
the Third Estate meeting at the Tennis Court in Versailles, 
1789, at the beginning of the French Revolution), and 
issued a manifesto appealing to the nation not to pay taxes, 
not to yield recruits for the army, and not to consider itself 
bound by foreign loans, until the Duma was restored. 
This Viborg Manifesto created a great sensation among 

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THE STATES OF EUROPE. 1905-1911 421 

well-informed liberals and aroused the hostility of the 
government, but it failed to have any marked effect upon 
the masses of the Russian people. A few isolated army 
mutinies and Terrorist outrages were the only signs that 
it had affected any portion of the country. The govern- 
ment, at the time that it dissolved the First Duma, had 
issued a summons for a second to meet March 6, 1907, 
and thus had given apparent evidence of its intention to 
continue the system of representative government. The 
people at large, although they disapproved of the dissolu- 
tion of the First Duma, were exhausted by the disorders 
of the preceding winter, were disappointed at the uncom- 
promising and unconciliatory attitude of the radical element 
in the First Duma, and were therefore disposed to await 
the meeting of the Second Duma. 

In the meanwhile, between the dissolution of the First 
Duma and the assembly of the Second, Stoljrpin (the prime 
minister) assumed complete control of the situation. His 
policy was twofold : on the one hand he proposed to sup- 
press ruthlessly all attempts to induce changes in the polit- 
ical system by violence : on the other hand he intended to 
guarantee civil liberty for such of the population as were 
peaceably disposed, and to introduce some needed reforms. 
Naturally, his suppression policy attracted the most atten- 
tion : revivals of Terrorism were quelle*! oy secret and speedy 
trial and instant penalty of death; attempts at violence 
were met by banishment without trial — S5,000 persons 
suffered this summary punishment. The prisons were 
filled, and the executions frequent. 

The liberal elements carefully organized their forces to 
win in the elections to the forthcoming Duma. Every 
obstacle was put in their way by the government through 
its officials, but the peasants and laborers obeyed !: eir 
liberal leaders unquestioningly at the polls. The groups 
in opposition to the government had a large majority in 
the new Duma. 

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The Second Duma met for the first time March S, 1907. 
The attitude of the government was from the beginning 
hostile^ for the character of the chamber was even more 
Openly democratic than was that of the First Duma. Spies 
dogged the steps of the Liberal members, and Stolypin ad-^ 
dressed the assembly as its master, unwilling to make any 
concessions to it. The time was taken up in futile proposab 
and party strife, and no constructive measures of impor- 
tance were debated and passed* At the beginning of the 
session, the Duma demanded the repeal of the summary 
field courts^martial, by which Stolypin on behalf of the 
government had been trying those persons implicated in 
acts of Terrorism* A few weeks later an impossible faili 
for the expropriation of the landlords for the benefit of the 
peasantry was carried by a two-thirds majority. Stolypin's 
legislative program, which actually did include radical 
reforms, was disregarded for measures which the govern- 
ment could not approve. After three months of useless 
session, the government forced the issue: On Jime 14 
Stolypin demanded a secret session ; produced and read ao 
obscurely worded and indefinite accusation of conspiracy 
against the Czar on the part of the Social Democrats in tlie 
assembly ; and asked that the Duma consent to the expul' 
sion of these members from its number. The Duma imJne- 
diately referred the accusations to a special committee for 
investigation. The Czar, regarding this reference to a com- 
mittee as a method of sidetracking his demands^ did not 
await the committee report, but published a manifesto 
June 16 dissolving the Duma, with a statement that its 
members had not been real representatives of the needs 
and wishes of the people> and that the Czat would change 
the manner of election. 

Inasmuch as the Czar had expressly declared in his mani- 
festo of October 30, 1905, that the Duma was the l^psk- 
tive body of the empire, he had no legal right without 
its consent to change the electoral system. His oiily roasonB 

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THE STATB6 OF EUBOFB, 1005-1911 4M 

and excuse for so doing were stated in his manifesto of 
June 16, 1907: 

" He recognized that the composition of the Duma was not 
satisfactory. . . . Only that power which concedes the first 
elactoral law, the historic power of the Czar, possesses the rif^t 
to abrogate that law and to replace it by a new law; and as it 
was God who bestowed upon us our power as autocrat, it is before 
His altar that we shall answer for the destinies of the Russian 

He thus based his right to change the electoral law solely 
on his autocratic power. 

The new electoral law reduced the number of representa* 
tives in the Duma from 524 to 44£, limiting the right of 
representatives in many districts which had returned liberals 
to the preceding Duma. Thus Siberia lost 6 out of 21, 
the Caucasus lost 10 out of 29, Poland lost 22 out of S6, and 
Central Asia (which was full of Mohammedans) lost its 
entire representation. Furthermore, by the {M-ovisions of 
the new law many classes were disfranchised altogether, 
and the method of voting for the remainder was skillfully 
adapted to insure the election of conservative members. 
The control over the membership of the Duma was placed in 
the hands of the wealthy land owners throughout the empire 
— a dass of men naturally favorable to the existing regime. 

The dissolution of the Second Duma and the promulga* 
tion of the new electoral law, accompanied by a continua- 
tion of severe police measures of repression, prostrated 
temporarily the forces of liberalism. All the past efforts 
seemed to have been futile, and the autocracy to be reiistab- 
lished on an unassailable basis. Thirty-one of the Social 
Democrats of the last Duma were secretly tried and banished 
to Siberia; members of the First Duma who signed the 
Viborg Manifesto were tried and punished with sentences 
of varying degrees of severity; a new police ordinance 
provided a penalty of $1500 or three months' imprisonment 
for any persons publishing ot circulating any articles ''arous- 

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ing a hostile attitude toward the government." The gov- 
ernment was endeavoring to crush all opposition to its 
course by the familiar police methods. 

And yet the Duma still remained: the Czar did not 
venture to abolish that institution. And by the develop- 
ment of schools and knowledge of modem business and 
agricultural methods the general level of intelligence among 
the masses might be raised, with a corresponding influence 
upon the political situation. The Liberals, forced to yield 
to the power of the Czar's police, planned to exert tJieir 
efforts in developing a healthy and intelligent public interest 
in political and economic questions, and in organizing a con- 
servative reform group in the forthcoming Duma. 

The elections to the Third Duma were held in October, 
1907. Carefully hedged about by governmental supervision 
and regulation, these elections resulted satisfactorily: 
that is, they retiuned a large majority of conservatives, 
willing to support the government. Country gentlemen 
were in the majority, men who had been identified with the 
government by service in the army, in local offices, or in 
the great pervading bureaucracy. These men were not to 
be considered as reactionaries, that is, as men who desired 
a return to the old regime of complete autocracy with the 
effacement of the Duma, but as conservatives, men who 
were willing to work with the government along the paths of 
gradual reform. 

The Third Duma met November 14, 1907, and remained 
in session, except for its regular adjournment for holidajrs, 
through its full term of five years, until June 21, 1912. Its 
powers were strictly limited: the prime minister was not 
responsible to it ; although it was permitted to discuss the 
budget and to vote upon the expenditures, the Czar could 
at any time overrule its votes by arbitrary decrees pro- 
mulgated during its adjournment; its strictures upon the 
government's policies had no marked effect in causing a 
change. And yet, its very existence as an instituti^Hi in 

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THE STATES OF EUROPE, 1905-1911 425 

Russian political life had a noteworthy influence in stimu* 
lating and encouraging freedom of public opinion : public 
liberties were greater than under the iron regime of Von 
Plehvc; it was able to work in conjunction with Stolypin 
(until his assassination in September, 1911) to accomplish 
many reforms and to pass a number of constructive meas- 
ures of great importance; entire license of debate was al- 
lowed in the Duma, even to the extent of criticism of the 
government or of persons of the imperial family ; and Russia 
did have a parliament, even though the electoral system 
made that parliament representative of a class rather than 
of the whole nation. Autocracy and bm-eaucracy had not 
regained the whole of the ground they had lost dm-ing the 
civil disturbances of 1905 and 1906: a definite step had 
been taken toward liberalism, and the Duma was the symbol 
of the people^s rights as contrasted with the Czar*s power. 

C. Austria-Hungary 

This period 1905-1911 in the history of the Dual Empire, 
Austria-Hungary, is a record of a confused struggle between 
the different races for supremacy in internal politics. The 
conflict raged both in Austria and in Hungary, at times 
paralyzing the operation of parliamentary government in 
both countries. It included the following phases : (a) the 
struggle on the part of a large and influential faction in 
Hungary for the complete independence of Hungary from 
Austria; (&) the struggle of the non-Magyar elements in, 
Hungary f ^^ a political power proportionate to their numeri- 
cal strength ; and (c) the struggle of the non-German ele- 
ments in /Vustria for a political power proportionate to their 

J, The Struggle for Hungarian Independence 

It will be remembered that the Ausgleich of 1867 estab- 
lished a Dual Empire consisting of two powers united by 

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the perBOQ of their sovereign, by a joint ministry of three 
departments (Foreign Affairs, War, and Finance), and by 
mutual tariff and currency arranganents renewable at tai«- 
year intervals. The adjustment of relations between the 
two powers that composed the empire had caused coniinuai 
difficulty and irritation from the beginning. In 1867, when 
the Ausgleich was adopted, a strong group in Hungary 
had demanded complete independence from Austria except 
for the person of the sovereign, and adherents of this same 
policy had gained representation in all the Hungarian 
parliaments since that time. In the elections of January, 
1905, the Independence party became the strongest po* 
litical group in the parliament. Its special aims were that, 
in the renewal of the tariff agreement due in 1907, Hungary 
and Austria should treat with each other just as two foreign, 
wholly independent powers might treat togethar; that 
the charter of the joint Austro-Hungarian bank should 
not be renewed, the bank's place being taken by a Hun- 
garian bank in Hungary and an Austrian bank in Austria; 
and that the Hungarian army should be distinct in organiza- 
tion and command from that of Austria. 

In the economic treaty the Independents gained for Hun- 
gary all that they desired. Austria negotiated with Hun- 
gary an international customs treaty and guaranteed that, 
in future commercial agreements with foreign countries, 
Hungarian sovereignty and independence should be clearly 
recognized and Hungarian interests represented. Further- 
more, Hungary consented to a reapportionment of the re- 
spective contributions of the two countries to the common 
expenditure, agreeing to pay 86.4% to Austria's 68.6%. 
Both the economic arrangement and this fiscal arrangement 
were satisfactory to her as well as to Austria. 

To the demands of the Hungarians concerning the army, 
however, the sovereign offered a resolute resistance. He 
yielded a few minor concessions, as by allowing Hungarian 
regiments standards with insignia denoting the sovereignty 

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THE STATES OF ItJROFB, 190^-1911 41^ 

of Hungary, and by guaranteeing that Hungarian troops 
should be commanded by Hungarian officers; but he in* 
sisted upon the necessity for military unity in the Dual 
Empire. The Hungarians centered their demands upon 
the use of the Magyar word of command to the Hungarian 
troops, but these demands, too, Francis Joseph resisted. 
The strength of the monarchy rested upon the unity and 
effectiveness of its military force, and so long as the German- 
speaking house of Hapsburg was dominant in the empire, 
German was to be the language of command throughout 
the army. He was able to base his right to determine the 
question of discipline and training in the army upon that 
provision in the Ausgleich, or Compromise, of 1867, which 
stated that the two powers should act jointly in matters 
affecting the national defense. 

The sovereign and his advisers also objected strongly 
to the Hungarian proposals to separate the Austro-Hun«* 
garian bank into two institutions, one purely Hungarian, 
and one purely Austrian. Francis Joseph was bound upon 
principle to resist every effort to disrupt the economic and 
military unity of his Dual Monarchy. He considered that 
the maintenance of this single national bank was important 
in its influence toward unity. The proposal for separation 
was argued in the Hungarian parliament in 1908 and 1909, 
and presented to the sovereign and the Austrian parliament 
for their approval in the summer of the latter year. Francis 
Joseph pointed out that this question of a separate bank 
for Hungary was not provided for in the Ausgleich, or 
Compromise, of 1867, and could not at the present time well 
be introduced into it ; . and then he went on to lay emphasis 
upon the duty of the Hungarian ministry to fulfill its pledges 
of electoral reform in Hungary, thus implying that the 
question might be again opened for adjustment before a 
parliament more truly representative of the various Hun« 
garian interests. His answer was a shrewd political ma^ 
neuvcr : it did not actually refuse a request formulated and 

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approved by the Hungarian parliament; and it forced 
attention of the ministry to electoral reform, which the Mag- 
yar element did not sincerely desire because of the fear 
that such reform would weaken Magyar dominance. 
The question of the separation of the Austro-Hungarian 
Bank was thus indefinitely postponed. 

ii. Electoral Reform in Hungary 

The struggle of the races in Hungary has been during its 
modern history the most prominent feature of its internal 
political life. The Magyars, although they are actually 
a minority in the population of the Kingdom, have tena* 
ciously held the political control against the determined 
attacks of the Slav elements, composed of Poles, Slovenes, 
Croats, Rumanians, etc. Slav representatives have con- 
sistently adopted dilatory parliamentary tactics, blocking 
the wheels of government time after time, in the effort to 
obtain concessions from the Magyars, but without avail. 
The Magyars have been willing 'to endure government 
obstruction to any extent rather than to yield one tittle 
of their political power. 

To understand the attitude of the sovereign, it must be 
remembered that the Magyar politicians were continually 
making demands which he, devoted as he was to the essen- 
tial unity of the two powers he ruled, found it impossible 
to grant. Examples have been given above: it was the 
Magyar element which forced the tariff treaties on a new 
basis; it was the Magyar element which demanded the 
Magyar word of command to replace German for the Hun- 
garian troops ; and it was the Magyar element which sought 
the separation of the Austro-Hungarian Bank into two in* 
stitutions. Thus the interests of the sovereign, as he con- 
sidered them, were often opposed to the wishes of the domi- 
nant body in the Hungarian parliament. 

After a serious parliamentary crisis forced in 1905 by the 

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THE STATES OF EUROPE, 1905-1911 4S9 

inability of the Hungarian parliament to reconcile its de- 
mands with the sovereign's wiU, more than five months were 
spent in the search for a ministry who could command a 
majority to conduct the government. At last, in order to 
reduce the irreconcilable group in the parliament and to 
gain support for a ministry, Francis Joseph took the momen- 
tous step of permitting it to be known that he would accept 
electoral reform measures to introduce universal suffrage 
into Hungary. 

The existing system of suffrage in Hungary — one of the 
most complicated in Europe — was carefully framed by 
the dominant Magyars to confine the franchise to the privi- 
leged classes of their own race so far as possible. As it 
worked out, the system gave to the Magyars a representa- 
tion twelve times as great in proportion to their numbers 
as it gave to the Rumanians, or Slovaks, or Poles. The 
proposed reform would more than triple the number of 
electors, and would open the door of politics to the working 
classes of the population. The sovereign hoped that the 
readjustment of elements represented in a parliament elected 
by universal suffrage woidd result in relatively more atten- 
tion being paid to economic and social questions, and less 
proportionately to those racial quarrels which had con- 
sumed so much time in the past. 

The immediate result of knowledge of the sovereign's 
attitude was the formation of a ministry and the resump- 
tion of the regular form of parliamentary government. 
The foUowing year, in April, 1906, the Hungarian prime 
minister, Wekerle, definitely committed the government 
to measures of electoral reform. 

The problem, however, was exceedingly difiScult to solve, 
for the Magyars had no intention of permitting an out-and- 
out universal suffrage system to be adopted. Such a sys- 
tem would undermine fatally their own political predomi- 
nance. The years passed, and other issues brought other 
conflicts, but no serious attempt to pass a reform bill wa3 

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made. In 1908, it is true, certain proposals were put bef<H^ 
the parliament for discussion, but little was accomplished 
beyond revealing the gulf that lay between the wishes <rf 
the Slavs and the will of the Magyars. Successive minis* 
tries incorporated electoral reform in their program but 
were unable to survive crises on other issues long enough to 
place a well-considered plan before the parliament. Finally, 
the pressure of the public, whose expectations had been so 
often disappointed since the first announcement, proved to 
be too strong to be rejected further. On January 2, 1918, 
the Hungarian premier introduced the biU. 

The provisions of this bill were a terrible disappointment 
to democratic hopes. The familiar manipulation of the 
details of the electoral system to insure the continuance of 
the dominant power aroused intense resentment among 
the liberals. The total number of electors was doubled, 
it is true, but by differentiation in age qualification, and by 
provisions of property qualification, the exercise of the suf- 
frage was kept in the hands of the favored classes. For 
example: a common laborer, if otherwise qualified, could 
not vote until he reached the age of 30, but men with an 
intermediate school education might vote at 24; again, 
a man without an intermediate school diploma might vote 
at 24 if he owned eight yoke of oxen, or if he paid a direct 
tax of 20 kronen (about $4), or if he had for a fixed num- 
ber of years worked in certain stipulated employments. 
By such carefully worded provisions as these the ministry 
had insured the continuance of Magyar political supremacy. 

The terms of the bill aroused a timiult in the Chamber. 
The Social Democrats proved the most violent of the oppo* 
nents — naturally, since they were largely representative 
of the interests of those classes who were not enfranchised, 
and were not to be fully enfranchised by the bill. The meet* 
ings of the parliament were stormy. The Social Democrats 
threatened to organize a general strike as a protest of the 
laboring cla«se9 : the ministry replied that it did not intoid 

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THE STATES OP EUROPE, 1005-1911 4S1 

to be intimidated by such illegitimate means, and made 
preparations to suppress the strike by force. These prep- 
arations overawed the organisers, and the strike did not 
materialize. The ministry kept its majority closely in 
hand and forced the bill through the final stages to passage. 
It was passed by the Upper House without amendment 
March 15, 1913, and became law. 

ill. Electoral Reform in Austria 

The progress of electoral reform in Austria was attended 
with less difficulty than in Hungary. The Emperor recog- 
nised, when he accepted the principle of universal suffrage 
for Hungary in 1905, that he would be obliged to yield 
similar reforms to Austria. The Austrian people sei^ied 
the opportunity to make their wishes known without delay. 
In November a demonstration organised by the Socialists 
took place in Vienna in favor of the principle of universal 
suffrage — for five hours traffic was suspended while a pro- 
cession of workingmen, ten abreast, marched past the 
Houses of Parliament. On February 88, 1906, the prime 
minister, Baron von Gautsch, introduced a series of reform 

These measures provided for the franchise for every male 
Austrian over 84 years old. The new lower chamber was to 
have 516 members instead of 4&5 as in the old. The electoral 
constituencies were arranged so far as was possible on racial 
bases, so that Germans should vote for Germans, Czechs for 
Czechs, Slavonians for Slavonians, etc., and the proporttcn 
of members from the different races in the chamber was 
definitely fixed — Germans 288, Czedis 107, Poles 89» 
Ktttbenians SS, Slavonians 24, Italians 19, 3erbo^ir>atial» 
18, Rumanians 5. Such a system, arranged according to 
radal and linguistic differences, seems mechanical, yet it 
wa9 in accMdance with historical traditions and natural 
afelong disUnctions* 

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The measures, though not enthusiastically received, went 
through the parliament with astonishingly little opposition. 
Baron von Gautsch himself fell from power in April, 1906 ; 
was succeeded by Prince zu Hohenlohe-Schillingsfiirst, 
who remained in office only six weeks, and was in tiurn sue* 
ceeded (June 2, 1906) by Baron von Beck; but through 
these ministerial changes the policy of the government to 
pass the electoral reform measures continued firm. The 
Emperor himself took an active share in bringing about the 
result, calling the hostile party leaders to the imperial 
palace and informing them that the reform must be ac- 
complished. Early in December the lower house accepted 
the measures, and a month later, January 26, 1907, with 
the approval of the upper chamber, the measures became 

The new electoral law accentuated rather than lessened 
the racial bitterness in the parliament. The Czechs of 
Bohemia proved to be the most troublesome element, 
demanding the federalization of the empire, an equal official 
status for the Czechish and German languages in Bohemia, 
independent Czechish technical schools and universities, 
and the use of the Czechish language in the Bohemian con- 
tingent of the army. When unable to gain these demands, 
they resorted to the familiar tactics of parliamentary 
obstruction. Indeed, the Austrian parUament (and the 
Hungarian parliament as well) is known to be the most 
disorderly legislative body in Europe. For example: in 
February, 1909, the Austrian premier, with the hope of 
reconciling the discordant element, introduced a measure 
providing for the administrative division of Bohemia into 
three classes of districts, one class of Czechish districts in 
which Czechish should be the official language, a second 
class of German in which German should be the official 
language, and a third class of mixed in which the two lan- 
guages should be upon an equal status; at once the Ger- 
mans in the parliament massed against the Czechs; all 

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parliamentary business was effectually blocked; a free 
fight ensued at the early closure of the session in which 
one member had his hand severely bitten and another had 
his coat torn from his back ; and the representatives finally 
dispersed defiantly singing their racial anthems at each 

Similar disorderly scenes defeated the attempts of the 
government to get through parliament sorely needed con- 
structive measures. Financial reforms and military re- 
forms were the chief features of the government's program, 
but the racial antagonism overshadowed all proposals of 
whatever nature. Throughout 1910 and' 1911 the struggle 
continued without cessation, marked by recurrent instances 
of violence. Not until June of 1912 was the government 
able to have the military jeform measures passed, and 
then only after the personal intervention of the aged 
Emperor. Broad financial reforms were impossible in 
the situation: the parliament confined itself to stop-gap 

At the close of 1912 the antagonism between the races 
was still the great unsolved problem confronting the sover- 
eign both in Austria and Hungary. Fears were openly 
expressed that the heterogeneous mass would fly asunder 
as soon as the Emperor died — and his death was expected 
each year. The heir apparent, Francis Ferdinand, had not 
become popular, so that people feared loyalty to him would 
not act as a binding force between the different races. The 
race leaders showed no spirit of compromise or concilia- 
tion and, as has been indicated above, did not hesitate to 
wreck the government policy when their own racial aims 
were not obtained. Thus the difBculties under which the 
imperial and royal government labored were overwhelming. 
Progress was slow, reform handicapped, the finances — 
especially in provinces like Bohemia, where the racial 
bitterness was especially extreme — in a badly muddled 
condition, sections of the army dissatisfied, and the people 


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in a constant turmoil. Government was at a standstill 
for months at a time, and no improvement was in sight. 

D. Germany 

In the domestic history of Germany, during these years 
1005-1911, we find no crisis approaching in seriousness the 
parliament bill agitation in Great Britain, the revolutionary 
outbreaks in Ttussia, or the racial antagonism in Austria- 
Hungary. The German people were as a whole satisfied with 
their government, proud of their economic progress and of 
their own type of civilization {KuUur)^ and willing to accept 
the burdens of national greatness, such as compulsory mili- 
tary service, heavy taxation for the support of the huge 
army and navy, and the domination of the military caste. 
Sharp criticisms there were at times of the national policies, 
even of the Emperor himself, but such attacks emanated 
from a relatively small political group. In case of any 
threat of danger from without, the government could rally 
an overwhelming majority to its aid. The essential unity 
of all classes and parties (including even the Social Demo- 
crats) in their adherence to their sovereign, their govern* 
ment, and their national ideals was the source of Germany's 
strength compared with the other states in Europe. 

In the elections of 1907 the inherent power of the Emperor 
and his government was strikingly shown. At the close of 
1906 the chancellor. Prince von Billow, dissolved the Reichs- 
tag after a dispute over the action of the government in 
the German colony in southwest Africa. In the elections 
immediately ensuing, the government appealed for support 
on the general policy of *' ships, colonies, and empire," that 
is, on the policy of the expansion of Germany as a for^nost 
world power. In allusions whose meaning was unmistakable* 
the government orators told the German people that they 
stood at the turning point of German fortunes: support 
for the government was a vote for an imperial policy of 

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THE STATES OF EUROPE, 1905-1911 4S6 

force and progressiveness in world affairs ; support for the 
opposition was a vote for a restricted German power, the 
limitation of German influence to the German territory in 
central Europe. Their imaginations aroused by the visions 
of world empire, the German voters gave their, support to 
the Emperor and government. Eleven million two hundred 
and sixty thousand people went to the polls. The Social 
Democratic party, which had maintained a consistent 
opposition to the government policies, in its representation 
in the Reichstag fell from 81 to 43. At midnight on election 
day, when the results had revealed a sweeping government 
victory, the Emperor himself came out on the balcony of 
his palace like a successful candidate for office in a republi- 
can country and spoke to the cheering crowds which had 
gathered : 

" Gentlemen, I thank you for your ovation. To-day all of you 
have put your hands to the work and have proved the word of 
the Imperial Chancellor, '"Germany can ride if she cares to." 
I hope this will be true not only to-day but also in the future. If 
men of all ranks and faiths stand together, we can ride down 
those who block our path." 

The influence of the government's victory was quickly 
reflected in Germany*s foreign relations. In the succeed- 
ing chapters the German intervention in the Bosnian crisis 
in 1908 and the Moroccan situation in 1911 will be de- 
scribed: it should be remembered that the hands of the 
government's diplomats were strengthened by the victory 
in these elections of 1907. Had the Social Democrats 
increased their majority in the Reichstag in those elections, 
and had the opposition been able to muster enough votes 
to embarrass the government, it is safe to assume that Ger- 
man diplomacy would have run a very different course 
during the next five years. 

The influence of this victory in the elections was also 
speedily reflected in domestic conditions. The policy of 
world empire is an expensive policy. For success it demands 

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according to international methods in the past a strong rnili^ 
tary and naval force ; and the maintenance of such a force 
requires huge amounts of money. The government was 
forced to go to the Reichstag year after year with budgets 
of increasing size and with new suggestions for raising funds. 
The national debt increased from 4,000,000,000 marks in 
1907 to 5,250,000,000 marks in 1911. Each annual budget 
with its estimated deficits and its proposed new taxes was 
the occasion for attacks by the opposition upon the govern- 
ment's policy, but with his solid majority in the Reichstag 
the chancellor consistently carried his measures and the 
country peacefully accepted the results. 

The principal reason why increased taxes and the increased 
national debt aroused so little strong criticism in the country 
at large was the continuation of the national prosperity. 
The population, which was 60,000,000 in 1905, arose to 
65,000,000 in 1911. The production of coal and lignite, 
which had been 173,000,000 tons in 1905, rose to 230,000,000 
tons in 1911. The production of pig iron, which had been 
10,800,000 tons in 1905, arose to 15,574,000 tons in 1911. 
The merchant marine, which had contained 3900 vessels 
with a tonnage of 3,440,000 in 1905, increased to 4700 
vessels with approximately the same tonnage (many of 
the older sailing ships being replaced by steamers). 
The total import and export business, which had amounted 
to $3,300,000,000 in 1905, increased to $4,450,000,000 
in 1911. These figures speak for themselves: they reveal 
an unprecedented growth in economic activities, which ra- 
diated, of course, through all the branches of industry and 
thus reached indirectly the smallest hamlet and humblest 

On July 14, 1909, the Imperial Chancellor, Prince von 
BUlow, resif^ed after a long and bitter struggle to carry 
through the annual budget. He was succeeded by Theo- 
bald von Bethmann-HoUweg. Von Bethmann-HoUw^ 
was a man fifty-three years old, who had been a successful 

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THE STATES OF EUROPE. 1905-1911 487 

lawyer and administrator, and had won his way up the 
various grades of official promotion by his business ability 
and parliamentary tact. He had been minister of the in- 
terior in von Billow's cabinet, and possessed the full confi- 
dence of the Emperor. Inheriting from the previous regime 
the strong government majority, von Bethmann-HoUweg 
continued the imperialistic policy. 

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In the last two chapters we have outlined the course 
of internal development in the chief states of Europe during 
the period from 1905 to 1911. During the same period, the 
international European situation was twice subjected to 
severe straiii, first in 1908, as a result of certain Turkish 
complications, and again in 1911, upon the revival of the 
Moroccan issue. This present chapter will be devoted 
to the discussion of the revolution of 1908 in Turkey and 
its far-reaching effects upon the general course of European 


Briefly stated, the following was the political attitude 
of the great European powers toward the "Eastern Ques- 
tion" in the opening years of the twentieth century : Great 
Britain, which had for a century been the protector of 
Turkey's position in Europe against the encroachments 
and ambitions of Russia because of British fears of Russian 
control of the Dardanelles, had come to a point where her 
government laid less stress upon this f)olicy because of her 
general political understandings with France (1904) and 
Russia (1907) on colonial and territorial issues. S^ussia stiU 
held tenaciously to her ideal of gaining ultimately the 
control of the Dardanelles, and was engaged in constant 
intrigue in the small adjoining states of the Balkan pen- 
insula to assure her position in this neighborhood. A^istria- 
Hungary, whose hold on the Italian peninsula had been 
shattered by the wars of 1859 and 1866, had definitely 


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turned to the southeast for her hopes of territorial gains, 
had by the Treaty of Berlin (1878) won the control of the 
administration and government in the neighboring Turkish 
provinces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and was intriguing 
in the Balkan states to counteract Russian influence there. 
Italy was casting covetous eyes on the disturbed Turkish 
province of Albania, believing that Italian control of Al- 
bania, with its excellent seaport of Avlona, would secure 
Italy's dominion over the Adriatic Sea. Germany^ who 
through the lips of Bismarck once declared that the whole 
Eastern question was not "worth the bones of a single Pom- 
eranian grenadier," had very recently acquired important 
railroad and development concessions in Turkish Asia 
Minor, had invested huge amounts of money in Turkey, 
and was preparing to invest still more, and had thus be- 
come heavily interested in maintaining the existence of 
Turkey. Each of the Balkan nations which had thrown 
off the Turkish yoke was dissatisfied with its territory and 
looked forward to increase: Bulgaria^ Serbia^ MontenegrOy 
and Greece had conflicting claims in Macedonia and Albania 
(which were still under Turkish dominion), and were con- 
tinually intriguing in these districts, each to advance itis 
own ends. 

The Great Powers of Europe, recognizing the baffling 
and serious issues presented by the conflict of interests 
affecting Turkey and the Balkans, had since the Congress 
of Berliil (1878) usually acted in concert or agreement in 
any measures put into operation to relieve critical situations 
as these arose. Thus, by the Treaty of Berlin, which issued 
from this Congress, an international commission was pro- 
vided for drawing up a reform scheme for the European 
provinces of Turkey. A few years later, 1881, the Turkish 
government was forced to consent to the establishment of 
the control of a joint commission of the great powers over 
Turkish finances. A decade afterwards, the Armenian 
massacres resulted in another commission of British, French, 

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and Russian officials (1895) to propose and institute re- 
forms in Turkish internal administration. The insurree- 
tion of Bulgars in Macedonia in the fall of 1903 resulted 
in a meeting of the Emperor Francis Joseph of Austria 
and the Czar Nicholas II of Russia at Mtirzteg in 1904, 
and the adoption of a scheme, the MUrzt^ program, by 
which Austrian and Russian officials were appointed to 
supervise and control Turkish administration in the dis- 
affected districts, and foreign army officers were designated 
to reorganize and command the gendarmerie. A year 
later (1905), the civil officials had obtained so little success 
that the great powers agreed each to appoint a delegate to 
a commission which was to have extensive control over 
Turkish financial matters in Macedonia. In 1908, this 
commission having met with little success. King Edward 
VII of Great Britain and Czar Nicholas 11 of Russia met 
at Reval and formulated a new program of reforms, known 
as the Reval program. But the Reval scheme was frustrated 
by the Turkish revolution which forms the main subject 
of this chapter. 

Thus for thirty years the great powers of Europe, r^ard- 
ing Turkey as a refractory and somewhat irresponsible 
member of the family of nations, had been attemptiug 
to evolve a practicable scheme for her discipline. None 
of these many schemes had been a success, partly because 
the Turks themselves in their resentment at outside inter- 
ference put every obstacle in the way, and partly be- 
cause the conflicting interests of the nations prevented 
them from working in close cooperation and harmony. It 
is not improbable that some of the powers in the Concert 
secretly desired the unsettled conditions in Turkey to con- 
tinue in order that they might have a more congenial soil 
for their intrigues. The Concert of Europe had failed 
lamentably in its treatment of the Turkish theme. 

During this entire period, the Turkish government had 
shown no sincere desire for reforms. Abdul Hamid, Sultan 

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THE CRISIS OF 1908 441 

since 1876, had become an adept in making promises which 
he had no intention of keeping, and in playing off the am- 
bitions of one great power against those of its rival. His 
advisers with characteristic oriental fatalism were well 
content with an administrative inefficiency which offered 
them opportmiities for corruption. Among the people at 
large, ignorance, race prejudice, and religious fanaticism 
were counted upon to assure the continuance of the Sultan's 
autocratic power and to prevent the spread of incendiary 
liberal ideas. Hence, secure in their authority, the govern- 
ing classes resisted every movement for reform, whether it 
was attempted from within or from without the empire. 


During this generation after 1878, however, a small but 
very influential group of Turks had been preparing for the 
overthrow of the old regime in Turkey. These men, 
many of them officers in the army, had been educated in 
Prance or Germany, or in the foreign schools in Turkey 
itself. They had thus gained a knowledge of the liberal 
governments existing in western Europe. They were in- 
spired apparently with genuine patriotic indignation 
at the inefficiency of Turkish administration and the cor- 
ruption of Turkish officials. They were ashamed of the 
indignities and humiliations implied in the constant inter- 
ference of foreign powers in Turkey's internal affairs. This 
"Young Turkish Party," as the group was called, estab- 
lished a central organization at Paris and published huge 
quantities of seditious literature which they smuggled into 
Turkey in the endeavor to enlighten the masses of the 
people with respect to liberal institutions. 

In 1908 the opportunity presented itself for a revolution. 
The Turkish government was at the moment embarrassed : 
in Arabia, the Turkish troops were unpaid and mutinous; 
in Albania the people were irritated to the point of re- 

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bellion by new taxes and recent firmans restricting their 
schools and printing presses. Furthermore, in June of 
this year King Edward VII and the Czar Nicholas II had 
formulated their Reval program and were preparing to put 
it into effect. The prospect of further interference of foreign 
powers in their internal affairs aroused the Turks to a high 
pitch of excitement. They believed and feared that the 
compulsory acceptance of a program of reforms drawn up 
by the British King and the Russian Czar would place their 
country in the grip of those powers. 

The Young Turks acted with promptness and energy. 
They transferred their organization from Paris to Salonika ; 
formed a committee of Union and Progress to organize 
and direct a revolution; and worked with feverish haste 
during the spring and early summer of 1908 to gain ad- 
herents to their cause. They selected the constitution 
which Abdul Hamid had granted to Turkey in 1876 and had 
soon after withdrawn as their chief demand of the govern- 
ment. By July their leaders had succeeded in pledging 
the Albanian chieftains and most of the Turkish army 
in Europe to this constitution. On the 23d of that month 
Major Enver Bey, president of the committee of Union 
and Progress, proclaimed the constitution at Salonika, 
and the second and third army corps prepared to march 
against Constantinople if the Sultan did not yield. 

The following day, July 24, 1908, the Sultan, impressed 
with the hopelessness of opposition, yielded wholly to the 
demands of the Young Turks. He restored the constitu- 
tion of 1876 and ordered the election of a chamber of dep- 
uties. Within a few weeks two other great reforms were 
instituted -by Abdul Hamid : (1) the abolition of the hated 
spy system ; and (2) the abolition of the censorship. A new 
era seemed to have dawned. Turkey, apparently, had 
turned into the road of progressive liberalism. Men of all 
nations and religions in the vast Turkish empire fraternized 
joyfully at the inception of the new regime. Liberals in 

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THE CRISIS OF 1908 448 

foreign countries, especially in Great Britain, foresaw the 
blessings of free institutions, of equality, toleration, and 
justice in Turkey, and freely prophesied lasting peace and 
good will for the new government. 

The way of the reformers was, however, beset with 
difficulties. Once the first enthusiasm had passed and no 
miracles to remove instantly some of the irritating griev- 
ances had been performed, signs of disaffection with the 
new regime became evident. Revolts broke out in Asia 
Minor and Albania, serious disturbances occurred in Mace* 
donia, and the massacre of thousands of Christians in 
Adana and neighboring districts of northern Syria threat- 
ened to provoke foreign intervention again. And polit- 
ically most important of all, in Constantinople itself the 
Sultan was intriguing against the Young Turks for the over- 
throw of the constitutional regime and the restoration of 
his autocratic power. 

As the reformers had gained their ends by the army, 
they now maintained their power by the same means. 
When the Sultan had made his intentions evident, the 
Young Turks called upon Shevket Pasha to march with his 
troops (25,000) against the capital. After a few hours 
of severe fighting (April 25, 1909) Shevket occupied the 
city. On April 27 the National Assembly, a body com- 
posed of the recently elected Senate and Chamber of Dep- 
uties, met in secret session, voted that Abdul Hamid 
should be deposed, and selected his younger brother Ma- 
hommed Reshad Eifendi as his successor. On April 28, 
1909, Abdul Hamid was taken to live in exile at Salonika. 
On May 10, Mahommed was formally invested with the 
sword of Osman as Mahommed V. August 5 the new 
Sultan formally promulgated the constitution so desired 
by the Young Turk party. The revolutionists had accom- 
plished the definite end for which they had been working 
and hopes again ran high that, now Abdul Hamid was 
removed from baneful activity, Turkey might be regenerated. 

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The leaders of the new regime in Turkey were, however, 
handicapped from the beginning in their efforts to solve 
the perplexing problems of Turkish administration. Tlie 
necessary political readjustments accompanying a radical 
revolution demand time, great patience, and unusual sagac- 
ity for their successful accomplishment. Unfortunately for 
those who wished Turkey well, disturbing elements within 
and without the empire gave the new government no time 
to test their program of reforms, and laid upon them a 
diplomatic task beyond their sagacity. The impatient 
and disaffected element in Mstcedonia and Albania would 
give them no rest. Two years after the Young Turks were 
firmly fixed in power, the Italian-Turkish War broke out 
(1911). The following year, 1912, the Balkan states leagued 
to attack Turkey from all sides. In 1913, after the Balkan- 
Turkish war had ended, the Balkan states fought among 
themselves, and Turkey was kept in constant turmoil by 
this war upon her borders. And then in 1914, the great 
general European war began. In conditions so troubled 
as these, it is hardly just to blame the new Turk party 
for accomplishing so little and for reverting to the auto- 
cratic methods of the old r^me. Their task, imm^isely 
difficult under the most favorable circumstances, was made 
practically impossible by the constant insurrections and 
wars of the years after 1911. To rally the forces of the 
empire for defense, arbitrary authority was necessary. 
The leaders, realizing the impracticability of relying on the 
inexperienced parliament, were forced by the logic of events 
to become autocrats. Thus by 1914 the government of 
Turkey seemed to be the same government as that of the 
old regime except that it was in different hands. 


We should not have spent so much space upon the 
account of this internal revolution in Turkey which seemed 

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THE CRISIS OF 1908 445 

to have amounted merely to a change of rulers had it 
not been that from this revolution came a long chain 
of consequences which led directly to the outbreak of the 
general European war in 1914. The first link of this 
chain was forged with dramatic suddenness by Austria- 
Hungary when, in the first days of October, 1908, she an- 
nounced the annexation of the Turkish districts of Bosnia 
and Herzegovina to the Dual Empire. 

It will be remembered that the two Turkish provinces of 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, along the northeastern Adriatic, 
had been handed over to the administration of Austria- 
Hungary by agreement of the powers in the Congress of 
Berlin (1878). In the thirty years following, a series of 
wise governors had done excellent constructive adminis- 
trative work in these provinces. There can be no shadow 
of doubt that the provinces had been more justly and more 
satisfactorily governed during this generation than during 
any of the preceding years under Turkish domination. In 
accordance with the terms of the Treaty of Berlin, however, 
Bosnia and Herzegovina were still a part of the Turkish 
empire and still owed allegiance to the Sultan: Austria- 
Hungary's rights were merely administrative. No limit 
had been definitely set on this administration, but it was 
generally (though tacitly) understood among the great 
powers that when the final dissolution of "-the sick man of 
Europe" should occur, Austria-Hungary would be recog- 
nized as heir to the provinces she had been governing. 

One other factor, however, complicated this situation, a 
factor which later became of overwhelming importance. 
Little Serbia, a land-locked nation, desired these same 
provinces in order to give her an outlet to the sea. She 
looked forward to a greater Serbia which should include, 
not only large parts of Macedonia (claimed by both Bul- 
garia and Greece), but all of Bosnia and Herzegovina and 
portions of Albania. The population in these districts 
was closely allied to the Serbs in blood, religion, and cus- 

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toms. The Serbs were able to carry on an extensive pan* 
Serbian propaganda therein^ even during the eflSeient 
administration of the Austro-Hungarian officials. 

Such were the prominent international aspects of this 
part of the Balkan situation in 1908: — the Austro-Hun- 
garian government had been efficiently administrating the 
provinces for thirty years, and was confidently looking 
forward to their incorporation into the empire in the full- 
ness of time ; the Serbs were carrying on an active secret 
propaganda to arouse sentiment for annexation to a greater 
Serbia ; and Turkey had never surrendered her sovereignty, 
and, not looking forward to her own demise with the same as- 
surance as the other powers, never expected to surrender it. 

The revolution of July 24, 1908, changed the situation 
suddenly. Although all the chancelleries of Europe had 
been aware of the Young Turk party's activities, none had 
expected their success. The constitutional Turkey startled 
the powers. The sick man of Europe seemed rejuvenated. 
Instead of waiting for the break-up of the empire, the ex- 
pectant nations might be forced to witness a new and 
efficient Turkey consolidating its dominions and reasserting 
its sovereignty and rights of administration over all its 
territory. Should this possibility become actuality, the 
new Turkey would certainly at the very beginning demand 
that Austria-Hungary withdraw her officials from the 
Turkish provinces of Bosnia and Herzegovina. 

In this situation, Austria-Hungary determined to fore- 
stall any such demand by Tiu-key by annexing the provinces 
outright and at once. Hence, on the 7th of October, 1908, 
the Emperor Francis Joseph issued a rescript announc- 
ing the annexation of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the Haps- 
burg monarchy. At the same time, Bulgaria declared her 
full independence of Turkey. 

Austria-Hungary's act raised a crisis of the first magni- 
tude in Europe. In 1871 she had been a signatory to the 
Declaration of London, wherein it was specifically stated 

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THE CRISIS OF 1908 447 

that "contracting powers could rid themselves of their 
treaty engagements only by an understanding with their 
co-signatories" ; in 1878 she had accepted the adminis- 
tration of Bosnia and Herzegovina while at the same time 
affirming Turkish sovereignty over the provinces ; and now 
in 1908 without conference with the co-signatories of the 
Treaty of Berlin, she arbitrarily broke the treaty and an- 
nounced the annexation. Her act, therefore, struck on the 
one hand at the sacredness of the treaty obligations on which 
international relations rested, and on the other hand at the 
existing political situation. 

The moral effect of Austria's act was to undermine public 
confidence in the force of the international obligations which 
had been carefully and slowly built up since the time of 
Napoleon by successive treaties. Wise and pacific states- 
men had hoped that the foundations of a structure had been 
laid which might be expanded to insure continued peace 
in the European family of nations based on the status quo. 
They had believed that Europe was progressing toward 
an era in which mutual jealousies and suspicions might be 
allayed and mutual confidence, resting on inviolable treaty 
obligations, might take their place. Austria-Hungary's act 
was a step backward toward the dark ages, toward the period 
when treaties were observed only when the self-interest of 
the signatories was involved in observance. It was a step 
toward the rule of force over the rule of justice and reason. 
It is impossible to trace here in detail the evil moral effects 
which this cynical violation of public international engage* 
ments had upon European diplomacy as a whole — indeed 
such effects are so subtle that the task would be hopeless ; 
but it is certain that Austria's act undermined popular 
confidence in treaties and her ultimate success in thus 
gaining her desires disheartened statesmen who were striving 
for progress toward international trust and confidence. 

More tangible were the immediate political results. 
The great powers at once protested against Austria-Hun- 

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gary^s act. The little Balkan powers, Serbia and Men- 
tenegro, their hopes for gaining Bosnia and Herzegovina 
for a greater Serbia thus checked, were aroused to fever 
heat and prepared for war. Russia, hereditary defender 
of the Slav nations and constant intriguer against Austrian 
influence in the Balkan regions, was wholly in sympathy 
with Serbia's aspirations. Turkey, just beginning her new 
constitutional regime, was embarrassed by Austria-Hun- 
gary's seizure of a part of her territory, and protested 
vigorously to the powers. Austria-Hungary responded to 
the threats of Serbia and Montenegro by mobilizing her 
forces on the frontiers during the autumn. She believed 
that she would have the moral — and, if need be, the 
military — support of her ally, Germany, in the step she 
had taken, and she relied on the weakness of Russia to 
prevent aggressive action against her. The state of popular 
excitement in Serbia and Montenegro, however, combined 
with the sympathies of the masses of the great Slav power, 
rendered the situation very delicate. No military opera- 
tions could be undertaken during the severe winter of the 
Balkan regions, but all Europe dreaded the possibilities 
of the following spring. It was recognized that actual 
hostilities between Serbia and Austria-Hungary would 
inevitably plunge all the greater states of Europe into a 

In this critical situation, the diplomatists welcomed the 
winter period as an opportunity to avert war. The first 
thought was to assemble a Congress of the signatories of 
the Treaty of Berlin (1878) for the discussion and settle- 
ment of the question at issue. Sir Edward Grey of Great 
Britain, answering Turkey's protest, assured the new govern- 
ment in Turkey that Great Britain refused to recognize 
the breach of the Treaty of Berlin; premier Isvolsky of 
Russia informed Serbia and Montenegro that Russia would 
safeguard their interests in a European congress, and de- 
clared to Turkey that Russia acquiesced in the view that 

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THE CRISIS OF 1908 449 

the annexation was a violation of the Treaty of Berlin. 
France joined with Great Britain and Russia in the desire 
for a conference of powers. 

In the face of the demands for a Congress, Austria-Hun- 
gary took the stand that the issue concerned herself and 
Turkey alone. Baron von Aehrenthal, the Austro-Hun- 
garian minister of foreign affairs, refused to consider a Con- 
gress unless the annexation was to be regarded as a closed 
incident, un fail accompli, and instituted negotiations with 
Turkey to determine the amount of compensation Austria- 
Hungary should pay. He refused to discuss compensation 
for Serbia and Montenegro on the ground that none of their 
legal or territorial rights had in any way been violated. 
In the first week of November, 1908, the Serbian Crown 
Prince and the president of the Montenegrin upper chamber 
made a hurried visit to St. Petersburg. Upon their return, 
the Crown Prince issued a statement that he had obtained 
from the Czar and the Russian people expressions of their 
sjonpathy, that he hoped for Russian support in Serbia's 
struggle, but that, however, Serbia must defend her rights 
in war whether or not she obtained the assistance of other 

The position of Germany in this crisis required the most 
delicate diplomacy. On the one hand she was determined 
to maintain her close bonds of alliance with Austria-Hun- 
gary ; and on the other hand her enormously valuable con- 
cessions and investments in Turkey made it necessary 
for her to retain the friendship of that country. It was a 
difficult course to steer. Germany used the opportunity 
with daring and skill to test the strength of the coalition 
forming against her and to increase her own prestige in 
European politics. Prince von BUlow, the German im- 
perial chancellor, has interpreted for us the policy of Ger- 
many in this crisis : 

* **In my speeches in the Reichstag I made it quite clear that 
Germany was resolved to preserve her alliance with Austria at 


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any cost. The German sword had been thrown into the scale 
of European decision, directly in support of oiur Austro-Hungarian 
ally, indirectly for the preservation of European peace, and above 
all for the sake of German credit and the maintenance of our 
position in the world. 

"It would now be made manifest whether Germany really had 
been checkmated by the poUcy of isolation, and whether the 
Powers that had been drawn into the circle of anti-German policy 
would find it consistent with their vital interests in Europe to 
take up a hostile attitude towards the German Empire and its 
allies." (von Bulow, "Imperial Germany," trans, by M. A. 
Lewenz, p. 62.) 

On October 13, von BUlow notified Sir Edward Grey 
that, "Germany could not, any more than Austria-Hun- 
gary, allow the discussion of the annexation by the con- 
ference." At the same time in Turkey, the adroit Baron 
Marschall von Bieberstein, German ambassador, was in a 
most friendly and confidential manner smoothing the way 
for the negotiations between Austria-Hungary and Turkey 
by persuading the Turkish leaders that their best interests 
lay in recognizing the annexation, gaining certain desired 
privileges, and accepting a substantial sum in compensa- 

The negotiations between Austria-Hungary and Turkey 
dragged on through the months of December, 1908, and 
January and February, 1909. Von Aehrenthal, possibly 
influenced by suggestions from his German ally, proved 
conciliatory. Austria-Hungary agreed to an increase of 
15 per cent in the Turkish customs duties, to the establish- 
ment of Turkish government monopolies in Turkey of 
cigarette paper and matches, to the religious freedom of 
Mohammedans in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and, finally, 
to the payment of an indemnity amounting to twelve and 
a half million dollars. The protocol containing these (and 
some less important) provisions was signed February 26, 
1909. On April 5, after five hours of debate, it was ratified 
by the Turkish chamber. 

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THE CRISIS OF 1908 451 

Although the decision by mutual agreement between 
Austria-Hungary and Turkey concerning the disposition of 
Bosnia and Herzegovina might seem to have removed the chief 
disturbing element in the situation, it by no means ended 
the crisis. Serbia, whose claim for compensation Aehren- 
thal had consistently refused to admit, was arming for war 
and was confidently expecting the aid of Russia in her 
struggle. Great Britain and France, maintaining that under 
the provisions of the Treaty of Berlin the disposition of 
Bosnia and Herzegovina had ceased to be a private question 
between Austria-Hungary and Turkey, were unwilling to 
recognize the validity of the Austro-Turkish agreement. 
According to their policy, a greater principle was at stake. 
They did not wish to take any step which might be inter- 
preted as an acknowledgment that the terms of a general 
treaty signed by all the great powers might be altered or 
abrogated by private agreement between two states. And 
yet, the vital interests of Great Britain and France in the 
Balkans were so slight that they were not anxious for a 
war begun over such a question. Russia was in a most 
difficult position: having committed herself as far as she 
had in condemning the annexation and in promising aid 
to Serbia and Montenegro, she could not withdraw without 
humiliation and disgrace; yet the condition of her army 
and navy, not recovered from the disastrous war against 
Japan (1904-1905), and the political unrest amounting al- 
most to a revolution throughout the country, made a con- 
flict with the two powerful and united central powers 
most dangerous. 

The climax to the existing crisis came at the end of March, 
1909. Both Serbia and Austria-Hungary had mobilized 
for hostilities. The treaty of commerce between the two 
countries was due to expire March SI. The Austro-Hun- 
garian niinister to Serbia informed that government that 
his country could not agree to a new commercial treaty un- 
less Serbia would give assurances that she would return 

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to a peaceful and neighborly attitude. In reply, Serbia 
addressed a note to the powers (thus attempting to compel 
their intervention in her favor), stating that she had no 
intention of provoking a war with Austria-Hungary, that 
she would continue to fulfill her duties as a neighbor, and 
that, trusting in the wisdom and justice of the powers, 
she placed her cause in their hands as a competent tribunal. 
The Austro-Hungarian government at once declared this 
answer unsatisfactory and submitted through its minister at 
Belgrade a set of demands, stating that if these were re- 
jected the Imperial Government would adopt the necessary 
measures to enforce them. 

In the meanwhile Germany was taking steps to guarantee 
peace. A special messenger with an autograph letter of 
the German emperor hurried to St. Petersburg and gained 
an audience with the Czar. What was in the letter, and 
what was said in the interview, have never been divulged. 
Possibly the strongest argument against the Russian posi- 
tion was one which, though in the mind both of the German 
envoy and of the Czar, was not mentioned at the audience — 
namely, the presence of corps after corps of the German 
army upon the Polish frontier. The effect of the envoy's 
message, however, was immediate and conclusive. In the 
last week of March, the Russian government, without 
previous notification to Great Britain and France, suddenly 
announced that it agreed to the Austro-Hungarian-Turk- 
ish understanding, and that it recognized the annexation 
of Bosnia and Herzegovina as un fait accomplu 

With the withdrawal of the possibility of Russian sup- 
port, the Serbian opposition collapsed. On the Slst of 
March, 1909, the Serbian government subscribed to the 
following document, very important because it formed the 
basis of Austria-Hungary's ultimatum in July, 1914 : 

"Serbia recognizes the fait accompli regarding Bosnia has not 
affected her rights, and consequently she will conform to the de- 
cisions that the Powers may take in conformity with the Treaty 

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THE CRISIS OF 1908 453 

of Berlin. In deference to the advice of the Great Powers, Serbia 
undertakes to renounce from now onward the attitude of protest 
and opposition which she has adopted with regard to the annexa- 
tion since last autunm. She undertakes, moreover, to modify 
the direction of her policy with regard to Austria-Hungary and to 
live in future on good, neighborly terms with the latter." 

Turkey, Russia, and Serbia having accepted the annexa- 
tion of Bosnia and Herzegovina, there remained no further 
reason for Great Britain and France to continue their 
opposition. On April 8, 1909, the Great Powers finally 
assented to the abrogation of Article 26 of the Treaty of 
Berlin, thereby giving official recognition to the annexa- 

Thus the crisis of 1908-1909 passed without precipitating 
a great war, but it left behind the seeds of bitterness and 
hatred which bore fruit in 1914. Serbia, crushed and 
disgraced, Russia humiliated, France and Great Britain 
balked in their efforts to uphold the sanctity of treaty 
obligations, while Austria-Hungary, aided and abetted 
by her powerful ally Germany, emerged with increased 
territory and heightened prestige — such results were 
certain to create soon an intolerable situation. Outwardly, 
normal diplomatic relations were soon restored. Austria- 
Hungary and Serbia signed a new commercial treaty im- 
mediately after Serbia's submission of March 31, 1909, 
and regular intercourse was resumed between Austria- 
Hungary and Russia in March, 1910. In November of the 
same year, 1910, the German Emperor entertained the Czar 
at Potsdam and an important agreement was concluded 
whereby Germany acknowledged the Russian sphere of 
influence in northern Persia in return for the withdrawal 
of Russian opposition to the famous projected Bagdad 
railroad. These provisions were definitely set forth in a 
Russo-German convention of August 19, 1911. Thus, 
superficially, Austria-Hungary, Russia, and Germany were 
again on excellent terms. 

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International relations had, however, been profoundly 
affected and could not easily recover from the shock. The 
suspicions of the powers of the Entente were directed point- 
edly to the German machinations in Turkey. That country, 
which had of old looked to Great Britain for its protector, 
now fell more and more within the influence of Germany. 
Von Bieberstein had played throughout the revolution a 
skillful and difficult part in maintaining German prestige. 
He it was who, when Abdul Hamid endeavored to regain 
power by a counter-revolution in 1909, urged the Young 
Turks to send Shevket Pasha with troops against Con- 
stantinople; he it was who with German money financed 
this short and successful expedition. And after Abdul 
Hamid had been sent into exile, the leaders of the New 
Turk party were men who appreciated what German 
influence had done for them. Von Bieberstein could show 
that, in spite of the British protestations of friendship for 
the liberals in Turkey, the British government had given 
them no assistance. And he could point to the fact that 
Great Britain, with her vast population of Mohammedan 
subjects in her dependencies, was the natural enemy of 
Pan-Islamism, which sought to reestablish Turkish polit- 
ical influence in Moslem countries. Then, after the rev- 
olution was successfully accomplished, von Bieba*stein 
persuaded his friends in the government that their first 
necessity was to reorganize their military forces, intimating 
that Germany stood ready to grant all desired assistance. 
In accordance with this plan, Germany loaned Turkey 
officers to supervise the remodeling of her army ; sold her 
in August, 1910, two battleships to serve as a nucleus for 
her navy; and extended her a financial credit of thirty 
millions of dollars. 

The alhes, distrustful though they were of German diplo- 
macy in Turkey, took few effectual efforts to check it. They 
closed their financial markets to Turkish loans, because 
of the spread of German influence, but that act simply 

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THE CRISIS OF 1908 455 

made it easier for German agents to increase their influence. 
The Entente diplomats did one thing, however, which was 
destined to have a brief success a few years later : — they 
attempted to instigate an alliance among the small Balkan 
states. Apparently the intention was that this alliance 
should prove a perpetual bar to Austro-Hungarian expan- 
sion to the southeast. We shall see in a later chapter how 
the Balkan league directed its energies, not against Austria- 
Hungary, but against Turkey. 

One general result of the 1908 crisis was more far-reaching 
than the diplomatic rivalry in Turkey and the Balkans, 
namely, the moral eflfect. The shameless cynicism with 
which one of the great powers had disregarded the obliga- 
tions of an important international treaty, and the brutal 
frankness with which the German Emperor boasted in a 
speech in Vienna a year after the event (1910) of how he 
had intervened "in shining armor" on behalf of his ally, 
undermined the mutual confidence on which sympathetic 
intercourse must be founded. Statesmen harked back to 
Bismarck's cynicism : — treaties cease to be binding when 
the private interests of those who lie under them no longer 
reinforce the text. The cry for disarmament speedily died 
away. Men who had predicted a millennium of peace and 
international good will were silenced. In the light of the 
events of 1908 and 1909 far-sighted leaders began to urge 
more and more pressing preparation for the great war 
they saw approaching. 

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The success of German diplomacy in the Balkan crisis of 
1908 seems to have encouraged the Emperor and his advisers 
to attempt the settlement of another outstanding issue in a 
manner satisfactory to them. The Conference of Alge- 
ciras, in which the great powers of Europe decided upon the 
status of Morocco in the first quarter of 1906, had been 
construed in Germany as a rebuff to the German govern- 
ment's plans and policies. The Entente, standing com- 
pactly together, had forced from Germany the concession 
that France (and Spain) should have the control of the 
police force in Morocco and should have a privileged position 
in respect to supplying funds necessary for the development 
of Moroccan resources. The new police force was inaugu- 
rated in November of 1906, and negotiations were begun on 
financial arrangements. Thus, although the independence 
of Morocco was formally recognized by the Algeciras Act, 
France (with Spain) actually had rights in the country 
which other nations did not have. This situation was 
thoroughly unsatisfactory to the German statesmen. The 
German government watched developments in Morocco 
with keen interest, looking for an opening which would 
allow them to retrieve their failure in the Algeciras Con- 

During the following years these developments gave 
good cause for careful attention. Morocco was torn by 
internal dissensions. A large section of the Arab popula- 


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tion bitterly resented the French influence provided by the 
Algeciras Act of 1906. The Sultan, Abdul Asiz, who was 
suspected of French sympathies, rapidly lost popularity. 
Sporadic distiu*bances and mob violence continued through 
the latter half of 1906 and the opening months of 1907, 
resulting in the death of a number of Europeans and the 
paralysis of the government. These uprisings culminated 
in the summer of 1907 in an organized rebellion, when 
Mulai-el-Hafid, the brother of the Sultan, put himself at 
the head of the disaffected element and rallied around him 
the most powerful Sheiks in the country. By February of 
1908, Mulai-el-Hafid had control of the most important 
parts of the interior of the coimtry, and had been welcomed 
into Fez, the capital. In August of the same year he de- 
feated overwhelmingly Abdul Asiz's troops, and a few weeks 
later asked the powers for recognition as Sultan. The 
German government ill-advisedly took measures looking 
toward the recognition of Mulai-el-Hafid, possibly with the 
hope that Germany might thus obtain a favored position 
with the new sovereign, but most of the powers awaited 
the leadership of France. The French diplomats nego- 
tiated with Mulai-el-Hafid during the following months^ 
demanding that he should guarantee the safety of the 
monarch he was dei>osing, and that he should assume all of 
the debts, pay all the just claims, and recognize the validity 
and authority of all the treaty engagements, of the preced- 
ing government. 

Just at this time an incident, relatively trivial in itself, 
tended to accentuate the ill-feeling between France and 
Germany, find to embarrass the French diplomats in their 
attempts to adjust the Moroccan situation. In September 
(1908) a handful of deserters from the Foreign Legion took 
refuge with the German consul at Casablanca. A few of 
these were German subjects. The consul gave a safe- 
conduct to all the refugees and undertook to embark them 
on board a German steamer boimd for Europe. The French 

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authorities interfered and forcibly took the refugees from 
the hands of the consul. The German government, of 
course, at once vigorously protested against this infringe- 
ment upon the immunity under international custom of 
their representative. The French statesmen stood their 
ground, asserting that the German consul had forfeited his 
privileges by granting safe-conduct to the non-German 
refugees in the party. The situation was fraught with 
serious possibilities, for France was determined to maintain 
what she considered her rights and Germany seemed dis- 
posed to resent emphatically what she believed to be an 
insult to her national dignity and prestige. 

The internal situation in Morocco was pressing for a 
decision, however, and France held oflf the conference with 
Germany on the Casablanca affair until her diplomats 
could carry through the negotiations with Mulai-el-Hafid. 
The rebel leader was in a delicate situation : he had headed 
a rebellion inspired by mistrust and hatred of the French, 
and now he was being forced to treat with the French and 
being asked to subscribe to the very treaties (especially the 
Algeciras Act) which his followers did not wish to observe. 
At the same time, his hold upon the tumultuous elements in 
the country he had captured was. precarious and could be 
maintained only by the liberal use of money for the organi- 
zation of government, and by foreign aid. His funds were 
running low, and he realized that France was actually the 
only Power authorized by the general consent of Europe to 
give him the necessary money and armed police assistance. 
At last he grudgingly gave his written consent to the French 
terms (December 5, 1908) and in return the powers, Decem- 
ber 17, oflScially recognized him as Sultan of Morocco. 
The deposed Sultan, Abdul Asiz, gave up his power grace- 
fully, accepted a pension of $35,000 a year, and retired to a 
villa at Tangier to spend the remainder of his life. 

Now that the internal problem in Morocco was disposed 
of, France turned to Germany to settle the issue involved 

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in the Casablanca affair. Both countries, apparently, were 
willing to use the incident to reopen between themselves 
the whole question of the status of Morocco. Their repre- 
sentatives met in conference at the end of 1908 and the 
beginning of 1909. The Algeciras Act had to be the basis 
of discussion, of course, but it is noteworthy that the repre- 
sentatives of the other signatories to that Act were not 
invited to attend. The discussion proceeded between the 
diplomats of Germany and France alone. By the final 
agreement, signed at Berlin February 9, 1909, the German 
government conceded "the special political interests of 
France" in Morocco, and expressed itself "resolved not to 
impede those interests"; the French government an- 
nounced itself "firmly attached to the maintenance and 
integrity of the Sheerefian empire," and "resolved to safe- 
guard the principle of economic equality," and consequently 
not to obstruct German commercial and industrial interests 
in that country ; and both governments agreed not to "pur- 
sue or encourage any measure of a nature to create in their 
favor or in that of any Power an economic privilege," and 
"to associate their nationals in affairs for which the latter 
may obtain a concession." 

This agreement of February is important in view of 
ensuing events. It was an agreement between two powers 
on matters fundamentally affecting the conditions estab- 
lished by the Algeciras Act of 1906 without the consent of 
the other signatories to that Act. It created an involved 
and delicate situation in itself, for it allowed one group of 
powers to regard the Algeciras Act as determining the status 
of Morocco and another group to refer to the Berlin agree- 
ment. Furthermore, the wording of the agreement itself 
was one which could (and did) lead to misunderstanding. 
In spite of the reaffirmation of the independence of Morocco, 
France understood that Germany, by recognizing "the 
special political interests" of France, was actually consent- 
ing to the extension of French political control over the 

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country. The German statesmen, however, were disposed 
to lay special stress on the economic provisions of the 
treaty, particularly on the final clause providing for the 
association of their nationals in affairs for which these 
nationals might obtain a concession. Germany showed her 
interest in this aspect of the situation by her proposal 
(June 2, 1909) that in the future all concessions in Morocco 
should be reserved to certain French and German groups of 
financiers and captains of industry who enjoyed the con- 
fidence of their respective governments, third parties being 
admitted only at the expense' of the French group. Ap- 
parently, German statesmen were trying to establish a joint 
economic monopoly of Morocco with France, possibly with 
an ulterior political purpose of weakening the Anglo-French 
Entente by thus associating France with Germany. Al- 
though France, in reply to this proposal, insisted that 
British and Spanish interests should be admitted to con- 
cessions, her ministers did agree that all enterprises should 
be reserved for groups oflScially recognized by the respective 

In accordance with its understanding of its powers under 
the Algeciras Act and the Berlin agreement, the French 
government now proceeded to press upon the new Sultan 
its scheme for internal reforms in Morocco. The French 
emissary, M. Regnault, was met, however, by a persistent 
opposition on the part of Mulai-el-Hafid. The Sultan him- 
self had no fondness for France or for Europeans in general, 
and had gained his throne by heading an anti-foreign revo- 
lution. Thus, although he needed French money for the 
reorganization of his government and for the stimulation of 
commercial and economic interests, and although he needed 
French armed assistance to maintain order in the more 
distant parts of the country, he stubbornly refused the 
French demands. On his part he insisted upon the with- 
drawal of French troops from the country before he would 
enter into any further arrangement with France. Negotia- 

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tions dragged slowly along. On August 14» 1909» the French 
submitted to the Sultan a definite plan providing for the 
withdrawal of French forces from certain specified districts, 
for the settlement of the frontier questions at issue, for the 
establishment of a frontier police, and for the liquidation 
of the Moroccan debt and the payment of French claims. 
Again the Sultan evaded acceptance, and prolonged nego- 
tiations. Finally the French sent through their emissary 
an ultimatum (February 19, 1909) giving Mulai-el-Hafid 
forty-eight hours in which to accept the "Franco-Moroccan 
Accord." Thus brought to bay, the Sultan yielded, and 
his representatives on March 4, 1910, signed the formal 
treaty incorporating the French demands. At the end of 
the year, December 23, Mulai-el-Hafid similarly yielded to 
Spanish demands affecting the Moroccan territory within 
the Spanish sphere of influence. 

These treaties, which in effect secured the actual control 
of Morocco to France (and Spain, in the small part of the 
country over which it had influence), aroused burning 
resentment throughout Morocco. The Arab leaders who 
had supported Mulai-el-Hafid for the Sultanate did not 
appreciate the difficulties of his situation and felt that they 
had been betrayed. January 14, 1911, a French Lieu- 
tenant, Marchand, with a squad of men was massacred. A 
few weeks later several of the tribes banded together in open 
rebellion. A pretender to the throne, a younger brother 
of the Sultan, put himself at the head of the rebel forces, 
attacked and drove back Mulai-el-Hafid's troops, and be- 
sieged the capital, Fez. The French at once sent out a 
relieving column which successfully dispersed the rebel 
forces, entered Fez, and began the pacification of the country. 

In the meanwhile, Germany had been observing closely 
the progress of events and had been trying under the pro- 
visions of the Berlin agreement to advance her economic 
opportunities in Morocco. Two enterprises had been under- 
taken, but neither had succeeded. The Moroccan Mines 

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Company (Union des Mines Marocaines), proposed to 
develop the rich mineral resources of the country, but the 
German government was unable to decide between the con- 
flicting claims of two rival German groups. A second 
enterprise, the Moroccan Public Works Corporation (So- 
ci6t6 Marocaine des Travaux Publics), failed because the 
French government refused to guarantee the Moroccan 
loans which would be necessary to finance its operations. 
A third enterprise, proposed by France in 1910, consisted 
in the construction of strategic military railways in two of 
the disaffected provinces of Morocco. Necessarily these 
railroads would have to be built, run, and controlled wholly 
by France. When this project was made known to Ger- 
many, the German diplomats consented but demanded 
that Germany be given economic concessions elsewhere. 
While negotiations on this issue were proceeding. Sir Edward 
Grey intervened early in 1911 to protest against any joint 
German and French economic monopoly of Morocco, and 
to insist upon equality of opportunity for British concerns. 
The intervention of Great Britain quickly brought matters 
to a focus. 

France now reaped the fruits of her mistake in making 
the Berlin agreement without conference with other signa- 
tories of the Algeciras Act. Sir Edward Grey based his 
protest upon the Algeciras Act, which guaranteed freedom 
of economic opportunity to all nations. But France had 
entered into the subsequent agreement with Germany (the 
Berlin agreement) whereby in reality Germany and France 
were to have exceptional privileges in Morocco. Her act 
in laying before Germany the question of the construction 
of the proposed military strategic railways and in entertain- 
ing the idea of economic compensation elsewhere to Ger- 
many, seemed a sufficient indication that she looked upon 
Germany as occupying a favored position under the Berlin 
agreement as compared with the other countries. For 
France, grave political principles were at stake: to defy 

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Great Britain involved a rupture of the friendship which 
had been cemented between the two countries in 1904 and 
which was the strength of the Triple Entente ; on the other 
hand, strong intimations of German ill-will if France yielded 
to Great Britain were conveyed to the French government. 

While France was in this quandary, the revolutionists in 
Morocco besieged Fez, as stated above, and a French re- 
lieving force started into the interior. There were two 
possible ways of regarding this French expedition : first, as 
a genuine attempt to protect French residents and settle 
the disturbances, the French forces to withdraw at once 
aiter their task was completed; and second, as an act of 
military occupation intended to destroy definitely Moroccan 
independence. In support of the first view, it was known 
that the French consul in Fez had described conditions as 
dangerous and had appealed for aid: in support of the 
second, it was recalled that during the similar revolution 
which Mulai-el-Hafid conducted against Abdul Asiz the 
French forces had abstained wholly from any interference. 

Germany adopted the second view, and gave ample 
warning of her position to the French government. When 
the French columns were preparing to march toward Fez, 
the French minister at Berlin was warned, "If you go to 
Fez, you will not depart. It raises the whole question of 
Morocco." And again a week later, he was told, "If the 
Algeciras Act goes by the board, we shall reserve our liberty 
of action." From the first of April the German press began 
to dwell with increasing emphasis upon the actions of the 
French in Morocco, claiming that Morocco was about to be 
divided up and that Germany was in danger of being cheated 
out of her joint share. 

When the German government saw that France persisted 
in her expedition to Fez, it acted with characteristic deter- 
mination and decision. At noon on July 1, 1911, the Ger- 
man ambassadors presented to their respective powers the 
following note: 

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"Some German firms established in the south of Morocco, 
notably at Agadir and in the vicinity, have been alarmed by a 
certain ferment which has shown itself among the local tribes, 
due it seems to the recent occurrences in other parts of the country. 
These firms have applied to the imperial government for protection 
for the lives of their employees and their property. At their 
request the imperial government has decided to send a war-ship 
to the port of Agadir, to lend help and assistance, in case of need, 
to its subjects and employees, as well as to protect the important 
German interests in the territory in question. As soon as the state 
of affairs in Morocco has resumed its former quiet aspect the ship 
charged with this protective mission will leave the port of A^^adir.** 

Granting that Morocco was a free and independent coun- 
try and that German interests were endangered by the un- 
rest in the country, no one could legitimately criticize 
Germany's act in sending the warship Panther to the har- 
bor of Agadir. The French, however, knowing that the 
German government had recognized the sp>ecial political 
interests of France in Morocco, and knowing further that 
no German citizens were at Agadir and that the German 
commercial interests were insignificant and were safe, were 
disposed to interpret the appearance of the Pardher as sig- 
nifying the intervention of the German government in an 
effort to gain a permanent foothold in the rich African ter- 
ritory. Their suspicions were supported by the disclosures 
in a trial for libel in Germany some time after the crisis had 
passed, in which the following unrefuted testimony was 
offered : 

"Herr von Kinderlen-Waechter stated: *The Pan-German 
demand for Morocco is absolutely justified. You can rely upon 
it that the government will stick to Morocco. M. Cambon is 
wriggling before me like a worm. The German Government is 
in a splendid position. You can rely upon me, and you will be 
very pleased with our Morocco policy. I am as good a Pan- 
German as you are.' 

"On 1 July Herr Class called at the German foreign office and, 
failing to find Herr von Kinderlen-Waechter, was received by 
Herr Zimmerman, the under-secretary. Herr Zimmerman told 

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him: *You come at a historic hour. To-day the Panther ap- 
pears before Agadir and at this very moment (12 o'clock midday). 
The foreign cabinets are being informed of its mission. The Ger- 
man Grovernment has sent two agents provocateurs to Agadir, and 
these have done their duty very well. German firms have been 
induced to make complaints and to call upon the government in 
Berlin for protection. It is the government's intention to seize 
the district, and it will not give it up again. The German people 
absolutely require a settlement colony. Please prevent, where- 
ever in the press you have influence, the raising of claims for com- 
pensation elsewhere. Possibly France will offer us the Congo. 
However, the German Government does not want compensation 
elsewhere, but a part of Morocco.' " 

The French government, then, interpreting Germany's 
warship as a threat of force in the Morocco issue, at once 
sounded Great Britain to learn how far that country would 
be willing to go in its opposition to German demands. 
Although Great Britain was at the moment in the throes 
of the great political struggle culnunating in the Parliament 
Bill of 1911, her representatives made it evident to France 
that she would stand firmly by her Entente. In a ringing 
speech at a banquet at the Mansion House July 21, 1911, 
Mr. David Lloyd George for the ministry made Great 
Britain's position clear : 

"'But, I am also bound to say this — that I believe it is essen- 
tial in the highest interests, not merely of this country but of the 
world, that Britain should at all hazards maintain her place and 
her prestige amongst the Great Powers of the world. Her potent 
influence has been many a time in the past, and may yet be in 
the future, invaluable to the cause of human liberty. It has 
more than once in the past redeemed Continental nations, who 
are sometimes too apt to forget that service, from overwhelming 
disaster and even from international extinction. I would make 
great sacrifices to preserve peace. I conceive that nothing would 
justify a disturbance of international good will except questions 
of the gravest national moment. But if a situation were to be 
forced upon us in which peace could only be preserved by the 
surrender of the great and beneficent position Britain has won by 
centuries of heroism and achievement — by allowing Britain to 


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be treated, where her interests are vitally affected, as if she were 
of no account in the cabinet of nations — then I say emphatically 
that peace at that price would be a humiliation intolerable for 
a great country like ours to endure. National honor is no party 
question. The security of our great international trade is no 
party question ; the peace of the world is much more likely to be 
secured if all nations realize fairly what the conditions of peace 
must be. And it is because I have the conviction that nations 
are beginning to understand each other better, to appreciate one 
another's point of view more thoroughly, to be more ready to dis- 
cuss calmly and dispassionately their differences, that I feel assured 
that nothing will happen between now and next year which will 
render it difficult for the chancellor of the exchequer in this place 
to respond to the toast proposed — of the continued prosperity 
of the public peace." 

A few days later (July 27) Mr. Asquith, the prime minis- 
ter, referred in the House of Commons to the n^otiations 
then in progress between France and Germany : 

"Conversations are proceeding between Prance and Germany; 
we are not a party to these conversations ; the subject-matter of 
them may not affect British interests. On that point, until we 
know the ultimate result, we cannot express a final opinion. But 
it is our desire that those conversations should issue in a settle- 
ment honorable and satisfactory to both parties and of which His 
Majesty's Government can cordially say that it in no way preju- 
dices British interests. We believe Uiat to be possible. We 
earnestly and sincerely desire to see it accomplished. The ques- 
tion of Morocco itself bristles with difficulties, but outside Morocco, 
in other parts of West Africa, we should not think of attempting 
to interfere with territorial arrangements considered reasonable 
by those who are more directly interested. Any statements that 
we have interfered to prejudice negotiations between France and 
Germany are mischievous inventions without the faintest founda- 
tion in fact. But we have thought it right from the beginning 
to make quite clear that, failing such a settlement as I have in- 
dicated, we must become an active party in the discussion of the 
situation. That would be our right as a signatory of the treaty 
of Algeciras; it might be our obligation under the terms of our 
agreement of 1904 with France ; it might be our duty in defense 
of British interests directly affected by further developments.'* 

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A few days later Mr. Asquith again made the British posi- 
tion clear by reiterating in the House of Commons his 
statement that if the "conversations" then proceeding 
between France and Germany should fail, it would be the 
duty of the British government to take an active part in 
the discussions. On both these occasions in the House of 
Commons, Balfour, speaking for the opposition Conserva- 
tive party, pledged united support for the governmen